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Indian Debates on the International Left : Selected Writings of Lajpat Rai

Book description

This book traces the Indian Left’s engagement with the international communist debates of the 1960s and 1970s, shedding new light on the fault lines within the Left as well as on its international solidarities. Lajpat Rai argued for rethinking established leftist positions, seeking inspiration in experiment and developing creative approaches for the sustainability of socialist ideas and ideals. 

The contemporary relevance of these debates is significant as the Left remains without a sharp response to the rise of neoliberalism and right-wing populism in India, and a failure of the Left to recognize the challenges emanating from a strongly integrated and organized finance capital on the one hand and the increasingly self-aware identity politics on the other. Democratic opposition rather than a bureaucratic thinking needs to be the backbone of any meaningful Left struggle. Lajpat Rai’s passionate writing gives expression to the spirit and intensity of political debates at the time and the role of the Left intelligentsia in comprehending, from a committed socialist angle, the shifting paradigms of an unstable world to help bring about progressive change.

About the editors

Shirin M. Rai is Professor in the Department of Politics and International Studies and the Director of the Warwick Interdisciplinary Research Centre for International Development. She is a Fellow of the British Academy. Her current work has three strands: feminist international political economy; gender and political institutions; and politics and performance. She has written extensively on these issues. She was a member of the PSA Commission on Care (2016) and Director of the Leverhulme Trust Programme on Gendered Ceremony and Ritual in Parliament (2007–2011). Her latest book is Performing Representation: Women Members in the Indian Parliament (with Carole Spary, 2019). She is currently working on a book: Depletion: The Human Cost of Caring. 

Anand Prakash, PhD, taught English Literature in Hansraj College, University of Delhi. He has written extensively on literary theory and published poems both in English and Hindi. He supports the cause of writing committed to change. His published books include Marxist Literary Theory; Wuthering Heights: An Interpretation; Muktibodh in Our Time (co-authored) and Text and Performance: A Theoretical View (co-authored). His edited volumes include Approaches to Literary Theory: Marxism; Nineteenth Century Thought; Modern Indian Thought; Interventions and Republicanism in Shakespeare.





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Politics and Society in India and the Global South


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