INDOLOGY (Was: Etymon: paTTaN); Witzel, Krishnamurti; Tokunaga

Bijoy Misra bmisra at FAS.HARVARD.EDU
Fri Nov 28 01:47:57 UTC 1997

On Fri, 28 Nov 1997, Robert J. Zydenbos wrote:

> P.S. By the way, I sympathise deeply with Prof. Muneo Tokunaga in
> Kyoto. It is indeed frustrating for a foreigner who takes India
> seriously to see urban would-be Indian intellectuals think and act
> otherwise. Unfortunately, there seems little an Indologist can do
> besides try to rescue for overseas academic libraries what still
> can be rescued.

At the risk of "polluting" the list, I have to make the observation
that the above generalization is unwarranted and totally absurd.
The concept of "rescue" is a political and unscholarly proposition
that continues to be heard in some unfortunate quarters.  I honestly
wish people to comment if this is a general feeling among the "scholars".
I hope not.

I do not know who went to Japan and why.  Any assertion from such
incident on the scholarship of a whole nation of people shows our dubious
delusion.  I will however accept that many modern Indian young men
and women are more allured to employment and economic security than pursue
traditional scholarship.  Any attempt by the assembly of scholars to help
reverse the trend through support and assistance will help.  On the
other hand,  let me surmise that to "rescue" materials in the name of
custody is no different than piracy.

I am sorry for my strong feelings, but I am miffed by the irresponsible

- Bijoy Misra.
  Harvard University.

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