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Teach-in Series

A View Behind the Headlines.

Dramatic news stories come out of India almost every week. Behind each of these stories –  deadly riots, rape, caste reservations, stalemate in Kashmir, a threatened environment and much more - one find a heated and acrimonious debate. India is rightly famous for its vibrant politics and public debates about deep social and cultural conflicts rooted in the country’s long history.

“Understanding India Today” is a special series in 2015-16 where the Center for South Asia wants to provide deeper insights into some of the big and divisive issues rin India. We want to go behind easy answers and received wisdom and instead ask some hard questions:

  • Why do so many millions feel that their religious and cultural identity is under threat even as they live in a democracy?
  • Does democracy mean rule by the (Hindu) majority, or should it mean protection of minorities?
  • Why is caste even more divisive today than in the past?
  • What does caste actually mean for the average modern person in South Asia?
  • Why are India and Pakistan locked in a deadly conflict that has lasted more than fifty years?
  • Will there ever be peace – also between Hindus and Muslims?