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Argumentative Indian,The: Writings on Indian Culture, History and Identity (English)

Author: Amartya Sen
Paperback
Language: English
Publisher: PENGUIN POPULAR CLASSIC
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Argumentative Indian,The: Writings on Indian Culture, History and Identity (English) (Paperback) Price: Rs.225

In The Argumentative Indian, Amartya Sen showed that India has always had a tradition of sceptical argument, which is vital to understanding its place in the world. Brilliantly argued and utterly original, this book remains the Nobel-Prize-winning author’s most popular work.

About the Author
Amartya Sen is Lamont University Professor, Professor of Philosophy and Professor of Economics at Harvard University. He was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, from 1998 to 2004. In 1998 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics and in 1999 he was conferred the Bharat Ratna. His many books include Development as Freedom, Rationality and Freedom, The Argumentative Indian and Identity and Violence.

Specifications of Argumentative Indian,The: Writings on Indian Culture, History and Identity (English) (Paperback)

Contributors
Author Amartya Sen
Book Details
Publisher PENGUIN POPULAR CLASSIC
Publication Year 2012
ISBN-13 9780143418030
ISBN-10 0143418033
Language English
Edition 1st Edition
Binding Paperback
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Book Reviews of Argumentative Indian,The: Writings on Indian Culture, History and Identity (English)

TOP REVIEWS View All Top Reviews (27)

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★★★★★
★★★★★
28 May 2012
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certified buyer
India and her culture - Amartya Sen at his most eloquent

The book is a collection of essays on contemporary India, its plurality, culture and argumentative tradition, written by author over a period of time. All of the essays bear the hallmarks of author's authoritative scholarly range over such topics as social economic theory, ethics and political philosophy, welfare economics, development economics, public health, and gender studies. These essays are part academic study, but is often enlivened by (eg: essay on Tagore, Satyajit Ray) his personal recollections and a deep admiration for the traditions and broad Indian culture that has made him a... ()

The book is a collection of essays on contemporary India, its plurality, culture and argumentative tradition, written by author over a period of time. All of the essays bear the hallmarks of author's authoritative scholarly range over such topics as social economic theory, ethics and political philosophy, welfare economics, development economics, public health, and gender studies. These essays are part academic study, but is often enlivened by (eg: essay on Tagore, Satyajit Ray) his personal recollections and a deep admiration for the traditions and broad Indian culture that has made him a...
The book is a collection of essays on contemporary India, its plurality, culture and argumentative tradition, written by author over a period of time. All of the essays bear the hallmarks of author's authoritative scholarly range over such topics as social economic theory, ethics and political philosophy, welfare economics, development economics, public health, and gender studies. These essays are part academic study, but is often enlivened by (eg: essay on Tagore, Satyajit Ray) his personal recollections and a deep admiration for the traditions and broad Indian culture that has made him an economist of a different class altogether. This book has been criticized over selective reading of historic facts that generally suits author's own thesis of the multicultural and inclusive Indian identity, but that criticism fades away after reading what we (a reader) see as the author's unconditional optimism about the virtues of democratic values in human life and the need to sustain this wonderful tradition in future.

This knowledge, distilled from his study of Indian culture is quite possibly an apt lesson for a world citizen.

5 of 6 users found this review helpful.
★★★★★
★★★★★
01 Nov 2011
first to review
One of the most amazing works by Sen

The book starts with a historical backdrop of Indian culture. It is a collection of his wonderful essays on India, given as lectures or published as chapters/ papers in different places. However, the connection is very nicely captured in this book. For example, the history of arguments between Tagore and Gandhi, the recent history of the government to change the history of India in the school textbooks or the reasoning about the skewed male-female ratios in different states of India has been depicted with very careful analysis. Some part of the book I found hard to follow, even as an Indian... ()

The book starts with a historical backdrop of Indian culture. It is a collection of his wonderful essays on India, given as lectures or published as chapters/ papers in different places. However, the connection is very nicely captured in this book. For example, the history of arguments between Tagore and Gandhi, the recent history of the government to change the history of India in the school textbooks or the reasoning about the skewed male-female ratios in different states of India has been depicted with very careful analysis. Some part of the book I found hard to follow, even as an Indian...
The book starts with a historical backdrop of Indian culture. It is a collection of his wonderful essays on India, given as lectures or published as chapters/ papers in different places. However, the connection is very nicely captured in this book. For example, the history of arguments between Tagore and Gandhi, the recent history of the government to change the history of India in the school textbooks or the reasoning about the skewed male-female ratios in different states of India has been depicted with very careful analysis. Some part of the book I found hard to follow, even as an Indian, the other parts are easier, since they are already quite close to my heart, and some parts are simply amazing ... the class of Sen.

67% of 12 users found this review helpful.
★★★★★
★★★★★
30 Apr 2012
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certified buyer
Great Reading ! A must for Every Indian.

The books deals Indian History & Culture in the perspective in which the emphasis has been given on highlighting the secular contribution like science , mathematics, astronomy ,literature etc of India to the world and stand taken by Indian Intellectuals vis a vis their counterparts in the world on these subject across the ages . It has tried to change the paradigm of western way of looking at India where it is primarily perceived as a land of Spiritualism & Mysticism and instead the book has tried to highlight the secular contribution(and hence Identity) of India with its histori... ()

The books deals Indian History & Culture in the perspective in which the emphasis has been given on highlighting the secular contribution like science , mathematics, astronomy ,literature etc of India to the world and stand taken by Indian Intellectuals vis a vis their counterparts in the world on these subject across the ages . It has tried to change the paradigm of western way of looking at India where it is primarily perceived as a land of Spiritualism & Mysticism and instead the book has tried to highlight the secular contribution(and hence Identity) of India with its histori...
The books deals Indian History & Culture in the perspective in which the emphasis has been given on highlighting the secular contribution like science , mathematics, astronomy ,literature etc of India to the world and stand taken by Indian Intellectuals vis a vis their counterparts in the world on these subject across the ages . It has tried to change the paradigm of western way of looking at India where it is primarily perceived as a land of Spiritualism & Mysticism and instead the book has tried to highlight the secular contribution(and hence Identity) of India with its historical tradition of relying on reasoning, debate, heterodoxy, pluralism etc.That current political ideology of some sections of Indian polity is helping this narrow political western viewpoint by presenting an isolationist Indian history & culture being contributed only by single culture .The ancient Indo-Chinese interaction has been dealt in length which otherwise is left in other books due to over stress on western interactions. The book also covers in detail gender inequality and class difference putting forward important statistics making it an insightful reading. Pluralism, present iconoclasm about secularism and Indian Identity, individually and collectively , has been covered very well.

4 of 5 users found this review helpful.
★★★★★
★★★★★
15 Jun 2012
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certified buyer
A fresh look at the history

The book gives us a glimpse in to the early history and culture of India and to a certain extent its impact on the individuals and our country. We have been spoonfed a few things at such a young stage that we simply accept them hard facts and never question them. For instance, India was a Buddhist country for about a 1000 years and how calling it a Hindu country by the political parties is not exactly true. Similarly, the greatest Sanskrit scholar Panini was actually born around Kabul, Afghanistan and not in the heartland of hindi speaking states.

The relationship of Tagore and Gandhi is e...
()

The book gives us a glimpse in to the early history and culture of India and to a certain extent its impact on the individuals and our country. We have been spoonfed a few things at such a young stage that we simply accept them hard facts and never question them. For instance, India was a Buddhist country for about a 1000 years and how calling it a Hindu country by the political parties is not exactly true. Similarly, the greatest Sanskrit scholar Panini was actually born around Kabul, Afghanistan and not in the heartland of hindi speaking states.

The relationship of Tagore and Gandhi is e...
The book gives us a glimpse in to the early history and culture of India and to a certain extent its impact on the individuals and our country. We have been spoonfed a few things at such a young stage that we simply accept them hard facts and never question them. For instance, India was a Buddhist country for about a 1000 years and how calling it a Hindu country by the political parties is not exactly true. Similarly, the greatest Sanskrit scholar Panini was actually born around Kabul, Afghanistan and not in the heartland of hindi speaking states.

The relationship of Tagore and Gandhi is explained well too. There are obviously some biases originating from author's views, and which are unavoidable by any author that attempts to write.

In short, I will recommend this book.

4 of 6 users found this review helpful.
★★★★★
★★★★★
21 Feb 2012
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certified buyer
Very thorough

I was a little skeptical of whether I would find this interesting. Not being a non fiction reader for most part of my life, I thought I was taking a gamble. Well, this was a gamble that paid off. It is a very very good book that requires a little patience to read through. Although I would like a word against Mr. Sen for sticking on to "Hindu Extremism" for quite a while during the first few chapters which probably required deeper investigation.

However, apart from that very minute lapse, I feel this is a very authoritative book from a well arguing man!

Must read for those who a...
()

I was a little skeptical of whether I would find this interesting. Not being a non fiction reader for most part of my life, I thought I was taking a gamble. Well, this was a gamble that paid off. It is a very very good book that requires a little patience to read through. Although I would like a word against Mr. Sen for sticking on to "Hindu Extremism" for quite a while during the first few chapters which probably required deeper investigation.

However, apart from that very minute lapse, I feel this is a very authoritative book from a well arguing man!

Must read for those who a...
I was a little skeptical of whether I would find this interesting. Not being a non fiction reader for most part of my life, I thought I was taking a gamble. Well, this was a gamble that paid off. It is a very very good book that requires a little patience to read through. Although I would like a word against Mr. Sen for sticking on to "Hindu Extremism" for quite a while during the first few chapters which probably required deeper investigation.

However, apart from that very minute lapse, I feel this is a very authoritative book from a well arguing man!

Must read for those who are preparing for competitive exams and those who would like to a critical glimpse at India and her citizens

4 of 8 users found this review helpful.

Recent Top Reviews

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★★★★★
★★★★★
12 Jun 2014
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certified buyer
Brilliant

A must read
Dr. Sen eloquently educates about our long forgotten argumentative tradition and throws light
into what ails modern India .
(View complete review)

★★★★★
★★★★★
01 May 2014
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certified buyer
Excellent source to interpret contemporary India in light of historical events

This book is an excellent assortment of essays on crucial social and cultural issues by Dr. Amritya Sen. The facts and rationale used to explain underlying topic is exemplary. Many essays are quite relevant in contemporary India and urges us to look for and different dimension of the issue at h... (View complete review)

★★★★★
★★★★★
30 Mar 2014
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certified buyer
Phenomenal analysis by Sen

Asking questions is important, yes! asking the impartial ones I guess, that is all Sen's work is about. I was never much aware of India's intellectual hertiage or for that matter, India's record in spirituality. Sen's thorough examination of India's past, stereotypes-then and now makes it a wonde... (View complete review)

★★★★★
★★★★★
26 Mar 2014
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certified buyer
A Masterpiece by the master.

Needs no words to describe it. As expected master showing his genius and reach through this great book. (View complete review)

    Book: Argumentative Indian,The: Writings on Indian Culture, History and Identity (English) by Amartya Sen
    ISBN Number: 0143418033, 9780143418030, 978-0143418030

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