History as Excuse for Abuses: Economist

China and India at times engage in a process of mythmaking and historical erasure in championing their thousands of years of history. A recent article for the Economist observes, “Nowhere more than in Asia do states and their rulers tend to think they represent not just, say, defined territories or peoples with a shared language, but rather whole civilizations, often cosmically ordained.” However, this representation distorts historical realities. In India, the Hindu nationalist state under Narendra Modi touts itself as a glorious ancient civilization that combatted Western rationalism and universalism with its own scriptural and ontological structures of organization. Moreover, this nationalist position extends to the battle against eight centuries or so of Muslim influence, military conquest and assimilation on the Indian subcontinent – a direct attack on India’s 190 million Muslims. In China, the government touts an ancient civilizational history in such a way that dovetails with its modern emphasis on secular modernity while overlooking the tragic fallout of the Cultural Revolution, from 1966 to 1976, as well as the current internment of Uyghur Muslims in Xinxiang. –YaleGlobal

History as Excuse for Abuses: Economist

Historical mythmaking at the center of nation-state consolidation in India and China
Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Read the article from the Economist about nations relying on history to excuse some abuses.

Copyright The Economist Newspaper Limited 2019

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