[INDOLOGY] More uninformed discussion of ancient India

Dominik Wujastyk wujastyk at gmail.com
Sun Jul 12 17:23:30 UTC 2015

I agree with you about the limitations of Sen's piece.

Furthermore, I don't understand why there is now a second "Nalanda"
recreation, when the Nava Nalanda Mahavihara, deemed university, that has a
developed program of teaching Buddhism and the languages of Buddhism, has
existed since 1951 at the presumed site of the ancient Nalanda.

Dominik Wujastyk

On 12 July 2015 at 17:00, Jonathan Silk <kauzeya at gmail.com> wrote:

> Dear Friends,
> In a somewhat different vein than the ongoing discussion of a certain
> Hindutva partisan, you might want to take a look at Amartya Sen's piece:
> http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2015/aug/13/india-stormy-revival-nalanda-university/
> In my opinion, while his political position seems to be something close to
> 180 degrees the opposite, he is in some ways remarkably similar in his
> almost studied ignorance of classical India. His portrayal of Nalanda is
> nothing short of fantasy, and I confess that I am disappointed and
> depressed to see such fictions repeated by someone who, until recently, was
> actually significantly influential in this 'neo' Nalanda project. That it
> might be advantageous to say certain rosy things in a political context is
> one thing, but the result is, to my mind, an utter misrepresentation of the
> historical truth. A final point is that by portraying Nalanda as an
> international university, using in his description explicitly secular
> categories, the anti-Hindutva Sen succeeds in virtually entirely subverting
> the Buddhist nature of Nalanda.
> I am curious if I am alone in my impressions of this piece.
> Jonathan
> --
> J. Silk
> Leiden University
> Leiden University Institute for Area Studies, LIAS
> Matthias de Vrieshof 3, Room 0.05b
> 2311 BZ Leiden
> The Netherlands
> copies of my publications may be found at
> http://www.buddhismandsocialjustice.com/silk_publications.html
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