"Science" in India

Kumar kumar at OSWEGO.EDU
Fri Oct 20 18:41:01 UTC 2000

Steve Farmer's posting on science in India is offensive, ill-conceived, and
wrong.  A scholar who projects himself to be better than the Indian scholars
because of his training relied heavily on an average article (not much scholarly
at all) in a magazine and his limited exposure of India (a few acquaints of
Indian origin and an Asian girl friend, as he claims) to desecrate a whole
generation of Indian scientists and engineers.  This posting says a lot more
about him as a person and a scholar than about the Indian science.

By the way, Indians form the largest (or the second largest) community of
minority scientists in America.  Indians also constitute a fairly large segment
of teachers in the American higher education.  Should we conclude from this, in
view of Steve Farmer's posting, that the American higher education and research
is in abysmal state?

By the way, Subash Kak is a celebrated member of the academic community in
America.  It is not fair to drag his name along with the "widespread plagiarism,"
"pervasive mediocrity," "mountain of junk papers with a very low citation index"
in Indian science in the same paragraph.  He has published more in the
peer-reviewed journals than many of the so-called "experts" on this list.  Many
of these journals are published in the West.  Should we start labeling these
journals too?  Varying views are common in most disciplines. Such name calling is
not.  Disagreement with his theories is O.K.; it is not O.K. to demean him.

Indology subscribers should be familiar with the principles of netiquettes.  In
the past the moderator and a few other active members had reacted to much less
offensive postings.  Where are they now?  We must have a few basic rules of
engagements on this list to ensure that the discussion remains civil and
respectful.  Steve Farmer's posting was neither civil nor respectful.
Alok Kumar

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