Hinduism in Public and Private: Reform, Hindutva, Gender, and Sampraday

Paperback | May 1, 2009

byAntony Copley

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Beginning with the premise that any pursuit of an Indian identity in the narrow terms of Hinduness is a radical distortion, this significant volume attempts to investigate why there might be a need for a new kind of social integration within the Hindu community in India. It looks at thephenomenon of religious reform movements in terms of the larger paradigm of modernisation, and in collusion with the ideas of nationalism and Hindutva. In doing so, it attempts to answer the question, what indeed is the role of religion in society. Is it essentially a matter of private faith, ordoes it ineluctably play its part in society at large? The first few essays analyse the influence of key personalities such as Vivekananda, Aurobindo, and Dayanand Saraswati on the rise of ideas which later came to be known as Hindutva. The later essays in the volume address the public-private paradigm more directly as they look at 'feminist' movementsassociated with Hindutva and more contemporary Hindu reform movements. In conclusion, the essays demonstrate that while the exact connection between Hindutva and the religious reform movements remain uncertain, it is clear that a specifically religious or Hindu nationalism grew out of the sameintellectual climate as the secular freedom struggle. The volume serves the crucial purpose of answering many questions about the Hindutva movement which have troubled the individual consciousness for a long time.

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Beginning with the premise that any pursuit of an Indian identity in the narrow terms of Hinduness is a radical distortion, this significant volume attempts to investigate why there might be a need for a new kind of social integration within the Hindu community in India. It looks at thephenomenon of religious reform movements in terms ...

Antony Copley is Honorary Reader and Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the University of Kent, Canterbury.

other books by Antony Copley

Format:PaperbackDimensions:375 pages, 8.46 × 5.51 × 0.07 inPublished:May 1, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198062826

ISBN - 13:9780198062820

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Table of Contents

List of ContributorsIntroduction: Debating Indian Nationalism and Hindu Religious BeliefPart I: Varieties of NationalismSaffron and Seva: the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh's Appropriation of Swami Vivekananda'The Centre of the Religious Life of the World' Spiritual Universalism and Cultural Nationalism in the Work of Sri AurobindoSecularising the Sacred Cow: The Relationship between Religious Reform and Hindu NationalismInventing a National Past: The Case of Ramdev's Bharatvars ka itihas (1910-1914)Part II: Public and Private Spheres'The Hindu Woman's Right to Samnyasa' Religious Movements and the Gender Question: The Sri Sarada Math and the Ramakrishna Sarada MissionRemembering the Tradition: Bhaktivinoda Thakura's 'Sajjanatosani' and the Construction of a Middle Class Vaisnava Sampradaya in Nineteenth Century BengalMahima Dharma Ascetics: A Case Study on Popular Asceticism and its Patronage Structure in Rural OrissaBhima Bhoi: The Making of a Modern SaintThe Seva Ethic and the Spirit of Institution Building in the Mata Amritanandamayi MissionBibliography