History is an Unending Dialogue between the Past and the Present

History is an Unending Dialogue between the Past and the Present

Ramin Jahanbegloo, in his introduction to this book of conversations, says, "When… we study Professor Thapar's analyses of early India, we do not have a sense of historiography as a positivistic science, but that of history as an unending dialogue between the past and the present. As a result, this continuous process of interaction between…

Romila Thapar: “The battle now is between religious nationalism and secular nationalism . . .”

Romila Thapar: “The battle now is between religious nationalism and secular nationalism . . .”

Romila Thapar, who has been associated with Jawaharlal Nehru University for many years, speaks to writer Githa Hariharan on the idea of a university like JNU. The idea was to explore Indian society through inter-disciplinary studies and discussion. At the Centre for Historical Studies with which she was associated, the past was not another country;…

JNU and Our democracy

JNU and Our democracy

  Image: Ishan Anand Recent events at the Jawaharlal Nehru University raise many questions pertinent to us as citizens of India. The questions have become imperative because it is apparent that many who govern us have little sensitivity to understanding the fundamental issues crucial to governance. For example, what are the necessary aspects of a…

Romila Thapar: “The protests by JNU students and teachers have been remarkable . . .”

Romila Thapar: “The protests by JNU students and teachers have been remarkable . . .”

Eminent historian Romila Thapar has been associated with JNU since its earliest years. She talks to writer Githa Hariharan about JNU's vision for educating the young to be questioning citizens. She also traces the pattern of recent attacks against voices of dissent on Indian campuses. Her advice to students and teachers is that they should…

Why can’t an academic deliver a lecture on secularism without police protection? – Romila Thapar

Why can’t an academic deliver a lecture on secularism without police protection?  – Romila Thapar

At Pratirodh, the Writers' Convention organised on 1 November 2015, Romila Thapar began with an anecdotal account of her recent lecture on secularism in Mumbai, a lecture for which she was advised to take police protection. She asks, “After sixty eight years of independence, is it not possible for an academic to give an academic…