Studies in Indian Politics

Sage Publications, Inc.
Publication date:

Latest documents

  • Comparative Assessments of Indian Democracy
  • Book review: Jelle J. P. Wouters, ed. Vernacular Politics in Northeast India: Democracy, Ethnicity & Indigeneity

    Jelle J. P. Wouters, ed. Vernacular Politics in Northeast India: Democracy, Ethnicity & Indigeneity. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2022, 426 pages, ₹1,638.

  • The National Bias of India’s First-Past-The-Post System

    The relationship between the local and the national in Indian politics has taken a variety of forms, from secessionist tendencies to agitational politics around specific issues. The course of this relationship is typically explored through electoral performance, primarily whether a party wins sufficient seats to form the government. There is much less attention paid to the relationship between votes and seats. This has led to some questions not getting the attention they deserve, particularly whether the first-past-the-post electoral system that India uses is entirely neutral in the dynamic between the local and the national. This article addresses this question by developing a model that captures the effects of the share of the votes of national parties, as well as the concentration of national and local votes, on the performance of national and local parties. The empirical evaluation of this system points to an overall national bias, which is eroded over time by the emergence of regionally dominant local parties.

  • Book review: Mukulika Banerjee, Cultivating Democracy: Politics and Citizenship in Agrarian India

    Mukulika Banerjee, Cultivating Democracy: Politics and Citizenship in Agrarian India. Delhi: Oxford University Press. 2022. 256pp., ₹995.

  • Editorial Note
  • Hindu Nationalism and Right-wing Ecology: RSS, Modi and Motherland Post-2014

    This article analyses the environmental politics of Hindu nationalism in India after 2014, which is deeply enmeshed with aggressive nationalism. Taking as its case study articles, newspaper reports and visuals published in the Organiser, a leading magazine of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), it focuses on four ubiquitous environmental themes—imagination of a great Hindu motherland; icons of mother embodied in river and animal; climate change and renewable energy and the idealization of Prime Minister Modi as an environmental saviour—that are visible in its pages. Through these themes, India is projected as a great ancient ecological Hindu nation while hatred and violence are directed against ‘polluted’ Muslims. The ascendancy of Hindu nationalists to power since 2014 has indeed resulted in radical changes which have signalled multiple governmental ‘green’ initiatives and brought climate change and renewable energy to the centre stage. However, and as this article illustrates, these are couched in an optic of purity and pollution, as well as caste and religion, on the one hand, and mobilization of corporations and mega ‘clean’ industrial projects, on the other, which are propagated in the name of people, development and environment.

  • Democracy in South Asia: An Expanding ‘Imagination’

    Democracy has become an accepted lexicon among ruling elites and the general public through the twentieth century. However, there are also doubts about its strength in the current century. Looking at survey data, this article attempts a first-cut analysis of citizens’ commitment to democracy. Taking an elected government as the primary principle of democracy, do citizens make concessions to non-elected decision-making processes? This article focuses on the five countries of South Asia to answer this question and arrives at the conclusion that there is often a large gap between a broader acceptance of democratic government as a principle and the more nuanced acceptance of democratic government as a necessary element of democracy.

  • Parties, Civil Society and Democratic Deepening: Comparing India, Brazil and South Africa

    Despite being among the most successful democracies in the Global South, India, Brazil and South Africa have all recently experienced democratic crises. I argue that these democratic crises result from the formation of social coalitions that have been willing to subvert democratic institutions and practices in order to preserve or restore their social and economic privileges. In structural terms, these reactions are tied to the unresolved problem of the incorporation of popular classes. This problem has in turn been mediated by the balance between political and civil society. In India and South Africa that balance has favoured the dominance of mass-based nationalist parties that have thwarted democratic deepening. In Brazil, a more balanced relationship between civil society and political society has favoured the partial incorporation of the popular classes.

  • Teaching the State in Political Theory: Notes Towards an Alternative Framework
  • Book review: Niraja Gopal Jayal, Citizenship Imperilled: India’s Fragile Democracy

    Niraja Gopal Jayal, Citizenship Imperilled: India’s Fragile Democracy. India: Permanent Black. 2021. 260 pages. ₹795. ISBN: 9788178246451.

Featured documents

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT