Rajaram's bull

Brian Akers Sfauthor at AOL.COM
Sat Aug 5 02:32:09 UTC 2000

In a message dated 8/4/00 5:35:44 PM, vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM writes:

>What Indologists need to do is to popularize Indology.

This is true. I went to a party this spring which had a dozen or so graduate
students and faculty members from Columbia University's astronomy department
on hand. One faculty member described a quite thorough training program in
public speaking and popular writing that he teaches. Students are required to
give five minute talks, ten minute talks, thirty minute talks, etc. for
different types of audiences--school children, a general adult audience,
college students, etc.

Astronomy as a field has typically had great outreach. As I was listening to
him describe the program, I couldn't imagine an Indological analog. Am I
wrong? Does anyone on this list teach these skills as a normal part of their
duties? Did anyone receive such training?

>Like it or not, there is a general feeling among Indians that Indology
>as a rule subscribes to too much Indophobia.

Could you be more specific, give some examples? I think Indology would be a
very strange career choice for someone who is Indophobic! When and why does
the phobia develop?

Perhaps too many areas of study are being lumped under the rubric of
Indology? I see it as a very small, musty corner that has virtually ceased to
exist as a discipline--vastly outgunned by more modern, more general
disciplines like linguistics, anthropology, economics, etc. Do you think
(some) Indians view anyone who studies India in an academic way is an


Brian Dana Akers
sfauthor at aol.com

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