[INDOLOGY] Against the petition against Prof. Pollock

Nagaraj Paturi nagarajpaturi at gmail.com
Mon Feb 29 07:40:41 UTC 2016

Thanks Prof. Birgit Kellner for providing the SAI link for the paper by
Prof. Pollock.

I read the paper. There indeed seems to be a misunderstanding on the part
of those who found this paper to be demeaning the knowledge of the South
Asian or Indian or Sanskrit authors.

The whole paper is a narrative account of the developments in American
universities with regard to study of Sanskrit, how the departments in the
form of Area Studies departments, in this case, the departments of South
Asian Studies affected was discussed with a tone of dissatisfaction about
how the whole thing went about, mixed with a style of wit and humour at
times. There in fact is a sense of respect for the knowledge generated by
South Asians in the paper. For many Indian university academicians, the
narrative of developments and the lamentation about those developments,
sounds familiar as there  are similar disciplinary reorganizations
and establishing new centeres and departments keep happening in India that
lead to the detriment of certain earlier focuses and incomplete projects.

Though Prof. Pollock just mentioned and did not elaborate much on that,
there is a clue in this paper, to what could be the source of the
impression of antipathy of American academicians like Prof. Pollock towards
the texts and the people that are their subject matter. It is the new trend
(or paradigm, can we say) of de-exoticization (or, though he did not use
the word, deromanticization) of the view towards the subject matter.

I shall post separately on the details of this possible source of


Nagaraj Paturi

Hyderabad, Telangana, INDIA.

Former Senior Professor of Cultural Studies

FLAME School of Communication and FLAME School of  Liberal Education,

(Pune, Maharashtra, INDIA )

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