Politics after Television: Hindu Nationalism and the Reshaping of the Public in India

Politics after Television: Hindu Nationalism and the Reshaping of the Public in India

by Arvind Rajagopal
     
 

In January 1987, the Indian state-run television began broadcasting a Hindu epic in serial form, the Ramayan, to nationwide audiences, violating a decades-old taboo on religious partisanship. What resulted was the largest political campaign in post-independence times, around the symbol of Lord Ram, led by Hindu nationalists.

The complexion of Indian politics was

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Overview

In January 1987, the Indian state-run television began broadcasting a Hindu epic in serial form, the Ramayan, to nationwide audiences, violating a decades-old taboo on religious partisanship. What resulted was the largest political campaign in post-independence times, around the symbol of Lord Ram, led by Hindu nationalists.

The complexion of Indian politics was irrevocably changed thereafter. In this book, Arvind Rajagopal analyses this extraordinary series of events. While audiences may have thought they were harking back to an epic golden age, Hindu nationalist leaders were embracing the prospects of neoliberalism and globalisation. Television was the device that hinged these movements together, symbolising the new possibilities of politics, at once more inclusive and authoritarian. Simultaneously, this study examines how the larger historical context was woven into and changed the character of Hindu nationalism.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521640534
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
01/01/2001
Pages:
402
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 1.06(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction1
1Hindu nationalism and the cultural forms of Indian politics30
2Prime time religion72
3The communicating thing and its public121
4A "split public" in the making and unmaking of the Ram Janmabhumi movement151
5Organization, performance, and symbol212
6Hindutva goes global237
Conclusion: How has television changed the context of politics in India?277
AppBackground to the Babri Masjid dispute284
Notes292
Select bibliography372
Index390

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