Minorities and Populism – Critical Perspectives from South Asia and Europe

This volume assembles renowned scholars to address, for the first time, the relationship between minorities and populism in South Asia and Europe from a critical perspective. Despite the very different and to some extent opposite historical and political trajectories, there is today a convergence on nationalist affirmation and on majoritarian politics between South Asia and Europe. In India, the Hindu majority rebels against wide-ranging minority rights anchored in the Constitution. In Europe, the refugee crisis and Islamic radicalization bring to the forefront the postcolonial legacy. Despite all rhetoric, there are obvious dangers of majoritarianism. Populist parties are divisive, partisan, disregard minority rights, engage in lynching, social division, stigmatization and exclusion, turning minorities into second-class citizens.

There is a profound structural connection between minorities and the current rise of populism in India and Europe. But there remains a deep perplexity and also anxiety: Does the presence of minorities necessarily have to trigger majoritarian policies? Are there no solutions to this dilemma? Many observers considered multicultural policies and affirmative action programs in India as a possible model for Europe to adopt in order to achieve greater integration. But eventually they seem to have failed. Why so? Are multiculturalism and the recognition of differences still options today? On the other hand, most scholars in India typically reject the European model of liberal democracy and secularism as impracticable in India and locate the reason for the current malaise in the west. But is liberal democracy really so bad in dealing with pluralism?

This volume, collecting a selection of the Reset DOC Venice-Padua-Delhi dialogue series, is going to answer two fundamental questions. First, what precisely is the nexus between minorities and populism in South Asia and Europe? Starting from those case studies, the authors will also draw some general theoretical inferences about the nature of populism. Secondly, given the dangers of populism for minorities, the volume will look for the most adequate and feasible solutions.

 

Table of Contents 

Minorities and Populism: Critical Perspectives from South Asia and Europe……….1
Kaul, Volker (et al.)

Part I Framing Populism

Minorities and Populism in Modi’s India: The Mirror Effect………………………………17
Vajpeyi, Ananya

On How to Deal with Populism……………………………………………………………………….29
Kaul, Volker

Part II Minorities and Populism

Solidarity in Diverse Societies: Beyond Neoliberal Multiculturalism and Welfare Chauvinism……………………………………………………………………………………………………41
Kymlicka, Will

Theorizing Populism in India…………………………………………………………………………..63
Gudavarthy, Ajay

The People and Populism…………………………………………………………………………………77
Zaccaria, Giuseppe

Part III Muslims as Majorities and Minorities

Politics of Constitutionalism: Muslims as a Minority………………………………………….95
Ahmed, Hilal

The Rajya Sabha as a Corrective Mechanism for Muslim Underrepresentation?…………………………………………………………………………………….107
Farooqui, Adnan (et al.)

Muslim Minorities in India: Trapped in Exclusion and Political Populism……………………………………………………………………………………………………….133
Alam, Mohd. Sanjeer

Ethno-Radicalism and Socioeconomic Backwardness: Lessons from the Indian Muslim Experience……………………………………………………………………………………………………..149
Rehman, Mujibur

How Cultural and Religious Pluralism Shapes Europe: The Role of Muslim Minorities……………………………………………………………………………………………………….161
Allievi, Stefano

Minorities Under Attack in Pakistan………………………………………………………………….173
Jaffrelot, Christophe

Historical and Contemporary Challenges to Islam and the Secular State……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….183
Mokrani, Adnane (et al.)

Populist Majoritarianism in India and Pakistan: The Necessity of Minorities……………………………………………………………………………………………………….199
Alam, Parvez

Part IV Gender, Caste & Other Religious Minorities

Religious Minorities in a Society Monopolized by Catholicism……………………………………………………………………………………………………..217
Pace, Enzo

Christians and Christian Dalits in India: Balancing Minority Rights and Caste Claims in Law…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………231
Robinson, Rowena

Women, Minorities, Populism……………………………………………………………………………243
Calloni, Marina

Armed Ethnic Conflicts in Northeast India and Resurgence of Women’s Movement……………………………………………………………………………………………………….265
Nepram, Binalakshmi

The Myth of Empowerment: Gender, Conflict, and ‘Development’ in Kashmir…………………………………………………………………………………………………………..277
Mushtaq, Samreen

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