Skip to product information
1 of 1

Princeton University Press

The Saffron Wave: Democracy and Hindu Nationalism in Modern India

The Saffron Wave: Democracy and Hindu Nationalism in Modern India

Regular price $52.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $52.00 USD
Sale Sold out
Shipping calculated at checkout.
Format

The rise of strong nationalist and religious movements in postcolonial and newly democratic countries alarms many Western observers. In The Saffron Wave, Thomas Hansen turns our attention to recent events in the world's largest democracy, India. Here he analyzes Indian receptivity to the right-wing Hindu nationalist party and its political wing, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which claims to create a polity based on ancient Hindu culture. Rather than interpreting Hindu nationalism as a mainly religious phenomenon, or a strictly political movement, Hansen places the BJP within the context of the larger transformations of democratic governance in India.

Hansen demonstrates that democratic transformation has enabled such developments as political mobilization among the lower castes and civil protections for religious minorities. Against this backdrop, the Hindu nationalist movement has successfully articulated the anxieties and desires of the large and amorphous Indian middle class. A form of conservative populism, the movement has attracted not only privileged groups fearing encroachment on their dominant positions but also plebeian and impoverished groups seeking recognition around a majoritarian rhetoric of cultural pride, order, and national strength. Combining political theory, ethnographic material, and sensitivity to colonial and postcolonial history, The Saffron Wave offers fresh insights into Indian politics and, by focusing on the links between democracy and ethnic majoritarianism, advances our understanding of democracy in the postcolonial world.

Author: Thomas Blom Hansen
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Published: 04/12/1999
Pages: 304
Binding Type: Paperback
Weight: 0.95lbs
Size: 9.20h x 6.14w x 0.85d
ISBN: 9780691006710

About the Author
Thomas Blom Hansen is Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and International Development Studies at Roskilde University in Denmark.

View full details