January 22, 2024

Radical Democracy in Modern Indian Political Thought — CRITIQUE Book Talk with Tejas Parasher– 14 February 2024

Between the 1910s and the 1970s, an eclectic group of Indian thinkers, constitutional reformers, and political activists articulated a theory of robustly democratic, participatory popular sovereignty. Taking parliamentary government and the modern nation-state to be prone to corruption, these thinkers advocated for ambitious federalist projects of popular government as alternatives to liberal, representative democracy. Radical Democracy in Modern Indian Political Thought is the first study of this countertradition of democratic politics in South Asia. Examining well-known historical figures such as Dadabhai Naoroji, M. K. Gandhi, and M. N. Roy, alongside long-neglected thinkers from the Indian socialist movement, Tejas Parasher illuminates the diversity of political futures imagined at the end of the British Empire in South Asia. This book reframes the history of twentieth-century anti-colonialism in novel terms – as a contest over the nature of modern political representation – and pushes readers to rethink accepted understandings of democracy today.

Tejas Parasher is Assistant Professor of Political Theory at the University of California, Los Angeles. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 2019 and was formerly Junior Research Fellow in Political Thought and Intellectual History at King’s College, University of Cambridge.

With Harshan Kumarasingham

Date: 14 February 2024


50 George Square G.06