Gandhi and the Claims of Indian Modernity (Video)

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Recorded on February 12, 2021, this lecture by AKEEL BILGRAMI, Sidney Morgenbesser Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University, explores two related questions on Gandhi:

Is there a way to integrate Gandhi’s philosophical and moral ideas with his understanding of British colonialism in the decades long political campaign against it that he led?

Is it possible to find a broadly left-wing reading of Gandhi in his critique of European modernity or is it only possible to find a progressive understanding of Gandhi outside of and despite his anti-modernism?

ABOUT AKEEL BILGRAMI: Akeel Bilgrami got a BA in English Literature from Elphinstone College, Bombay University and went to Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, where he read Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. He has a Ph.D in Philosophy from the University of Chicago. He has held the Johnsonian Professorship of Philosophy and holds the Sidney Morgenbesser Chair of Philosophy at Columbia University, where he is also a Professor on the Committee on Global Thought. He has been the Director of the Heyman Centre for the Humanities as well as the South Asian Institute at Columbia. He is the Editor of the Journal of Philosophy and also the President of its Board of Trustees. His publications include the books Belief and Meaning (1992), Self-Knowledge and Resentment (2006), and Secularism, Identity and Enchantment (2014) and over a hundred articles on topics ranging from the nature of meaning to the relation between religion and society and culture. He is due to publish two books in the near future: What is a Muslim? (Princeton University Press) and Gandhi, The Philosopher (Columbia University Press). His longer-term future work is on the relations between value, agency, and practical reason.He has held Visiting positions at Oxford University, Yale University, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Australian National University, and has received a number of awards –from the National Institute of the Humanities, the Ford Foundation, the Luce Foundation, twice from the Mellon Foundation, and the Social Scientist of the Year award in India in 2015. He has served on the Jury of the Architecture Award for the Aga Khan Foundation as well as on the Jury for the Infosys Humanities Prize for the last several years and is its current Jury Chairman.