Why are India’s leftists so afraid of nationalism in India, particularly among Hindus, but have a soft spot for terrorists, jihadis and Pakistan?
— Dr David Frawley (@davidfrawleyved) December 7, 2018
The Cambridge South Asian Forum is a group that I’ve started to get more involved in. Last night they organised a talk by an Indian academic, Mr. Pandey, and his almost miraculous trip to Lahore (the day after he submitted his PhD).
I don’t want to go into the details because Vidhi had the clever idea that I should interview him for a podcast (he didn’t go into it but his talk in Lahore was on Padmavat).
I wanted to instead dwell upon another point. Vidhi and I both noticed that among the Cambridge PhD contingent Indians are overrepresented in the liberal arts and Chinese in the STEM (V has a rather low opinion of the Humanities but that is a separate matter for another time).
More to the point this is the same group that hosted the Kashmir forum and even though everyone is an upper caste Indian their post-modern liberalism is intoxicating. They just love Pakistanis and instead their greatest vitriol is reserved for the Indian state.
One of the very charming and eloquent chaps was telling me about how his thesis was focussed on the weaponisation of the Indian state in the Naxalite corridor. I was just thinking that the Pakistani equivalent (oppression in Baluchistan etc) wouldn’t be around for long.
I had never really encountered this liberal arts post-modern Indian bunch but now that I have I finally understand what readers are saying. As a Pakistani I find them good sports and I love their company because their views pretty much coincide with my own most of the time.
I notice Vidhi is much more wary (I had dragged her along to the talk) but she wryly commented it was all well and good for Mr. Pandey (he’s submitted his thesis but he’s not yet defended it) to talk about how loved he was as an Indian in Lahore but what about an Indian woman in Lahore.
My point being is that as much as I love these post modern liberal arts (and they are shockingly woke for South Asians) in some ways I feel they might be the reason why India is where it is in comparison to a China.
The Chinese students are mastering the hardest sciences. V was telling me that she was the only South Asian in her floor (5 Chinese students) and that one of the students who she thought was a Sikh (he had long hair) turned out to be Spanish.
It’s probably some civilisational quirk where the Chinese are into hard sciences and the Indians into abstract philosophising but it does mean that even if Bollywood is the best thing in Asia and that Indian weddings are second to none; India isn’t going to be richer than China anytime soon unfortunately..