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The Indians  -  Portrait of a People
The Indians - Portrait of a People

The Indians - Portrait of a People

by Sudhir Kakar

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Product ID:27012

Language

English

Publisher

Penguin

ISBN

9780143066637 - Year: 2007 - Pages: 226

Binding

Paperback

Sudhir Kakar

Author: Sudhir Kakar
Katharina Kakar/
Publisher: Penguin
Year: 2007
Language: English
Pages: 226
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9780143066637

Description

In this bold, illuminating and superbly readable study, Indias foremost psychoanalyst and cultural commentator Sudhir Kakar and anthropologist Katharina Kakar investigate the nature of Indian-ness. What makes an Indian recognizably so to the rest of the world, and, more importantly, to his or her fellow Indians? For, as the authors point out, despite ethnic differences that are characteristic more of past empires than modern nation states, there is an underlying unity in the great diversity of India that needs to be recognized.

Looking at what constitutes a common Indian identity, the authors examine in detail the predominance of family, community and caste in our everyday lives, our attitudes to sex and marriage, our prejudices, our ideas of the other (explored in a brilliant chapter on Hindu-Muslim conflict), and our understanding of health, right and wrong, and death. In the final chapter, they provide fascinating insights into the Indian mind, shaped largely by the cultures dominant, Hindu world view.

Drawing upon three decades of original research and sources as varied as the Mahabharata, the Kamasutra, the writings of Mahatma Gandhi, Bollywood movies and popular folklore, Sudhir and Katharina Kakar have produced a rich and revealing portrait of the Indian people.

REVIEW

‘A remarkably perceptive analysis of Indian character ‘
- Khushwant Singh

‘An important booka readable and carefully considered statement on the issue of identity’
- Pavan Varma in India Today

‘A compelling work on the cultural character of the Indian people…both provocative and revealing’
- Shyam Benegal in Outlook

PRAISE FOR THE INDIANS

‘This is a book which should be read by all Indian executives’
- Mark Tully, Financial Express

‘This stimulating book is a magnificent attempt to understand Indian life in all its fullness…deepens our understanding of not just our lives but our minds as well’
- The Statesman

‘Mr and Mrs Kakar display an encyclopedic and deep understanding of the Indian social reality; their “way of looking at things” is surpassed by none’
- Far Eastern Economic Review

‘This incisive book…succeeds in great measure in understanding and explaining the Indian character’
- Deccan Herald

‘Both intellectually rigorous and sensitive, Sudhir Kakar is a reliable guide to how Indians today experience their identity, their sexuality, their conflict between tradition and modernity’
- Le Monde, France

‘A very readable and richly nuanced book which seeks to uncover the common identity of ‘The Indians’ in their historical continuity, homogeneity and civilizational uniqueness’
- Neue Zuricher Zeitung, Switzerland

‘The fascinating portrait of the society and culture of a country that will play an ever more important role in world politics in the future’
- Die Zeit, Germany

Contents

Introduction

THE HIERARCHICAL MAN
The Web of Family Life
Indian Culture and Authority

THE INNER EXPERIENCE OF CASTE
Dirt and Discrimination

INDIAN WOMEN: TRADITIONAL AND MODERN
A Daughter Is Born
Discrimination and the Maiden
Entering Puberty
Marriage: Is Love Necessary?
The Home and the World

SEXUALITY
Sex in Ancient India
Women in the Kamasutra
Love in the Age of the Kamasutra
Sexuality in the Temples and Literature of Medieval India
Contemporary Sexuality
Sexuality and Health
Virgins and Others
Sexuality in Marriage
A Shadow on Male Sexuality
Alternate Sexualities

HEALTH AND HEALING: DYING AND DEATH
The Body in Health and Illness in Ayurveda
A Visit to the Ayurvedic Doctor
Food and the Indian Mind
Health and Modern Medicine
View of Death

RELIGIOUS AND SPIRITUAL LIFE
The Hindu Nationalist
The Flexible Hindu

CONFLICT: HINDUS AND MUSLIMS
Hindu Image of the Muslim
Muslim Image of the Hindu
From Conflict to Violence
The Build-up to Violence
The Role of Religious-Political Demagogues
Rumours and Riots
Moralities of Violence
The Future of Hindu-Muslim Conflict

THE INDIAN MIND
The Hindu World View
Moksha, the Goal of Life
Right and Wrong
Karma, Rebirth and the Indian Mind
I and the Other: Separation and Connection
Male and Female

NOTES AND REFERENCES

INDEX

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