Analysing the Need For Indian School of Thought in International Relations Discourse in India

1. Abstract

This paper seeks to venture into the question of the relevance of the Indian school of thought in International relations discourse. The first component of the paper revolves around understanding the causes for the lack of Indian thought and narrative at the international stage, while attempting to answer the question of the existence and ways of understanding and deciphering the Indian knowledge system with special emphasis on politics in its next section, further while making the point of importance and knowing the framework and range on Indian school of thoughts and the third section presents glimpse of varied Ancient Indian thoughts and some of its thinkers. The next section dedicates itself to giving a brief on the Western domination and control of narratives and thoughts and how it affects India and the world. Finally, the paper tries to explain the relevance and need of having the Indic perspective and promoting Indian thought and narrative on the global stage.

Keywords:  Indian IR, Western domination, Global IR, Narrative, Indian Discourse, IR lessons, strategies, Influence,  Indian Epics. 

2. Introduction

Indian thoughts and world views since ancient times have been accommodating not just the ideas of oneself but were also inclusive of the world at large, be it the Vedic saying of  “Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah, Sarve Santu Niramaya” (let everyone be happy, let everyone be healthy) or the principle of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” (the entire world is a family), it is in the light of our beliefs that we formulate our views of right and wrong, ethical and unethical, it is our belief system that forms the base of our conduct and the framework of our actions, not only in relations to our private life but also in the sphere of international politics and economics. As India is growing up in the global power hierarchy, rising not just economically, but also moving towards becoming truly ‘Bharat’; it would be inevitable for us in coming years to stand up on our narratives about ourselves and the world. While we fuel and gear ourselves to rise in capability, influencing the world through our perspectives and narratives is going to be an instrumental challenge in India’s rise. 

The International discourse is dominated by Western thinkers, their thoughts, and theories, so much so that one equates political science with thinkers and theories of the West. According to the mainstream view, the winds of political discourse blow from Aristotle’s Greece, Machiavelli’s Italy, reach Voltaire and Rousseau’s France, blow toward Locke and Hobbes in England, meet Marx and Kant in Germany, go all over the Atlantic Ocean to met Edwards and Paine in the U.S.A, but these western winds somehow never seem to reach India and the East. In this paper, we are going to shed light not just on the effect of this domination of ideologies and thoughts of the West, but also will glimpse into India’s fragrant winds of political wisdom which can revive the International discourse. 

3. Why is there a Lack of IR Discourse In India?

When we talk about social sciences, the study of International relations especially when it comes to its research and its theory seems to be rudimentary. The contribution of the Indian scholars in global research venues is seldom low, in addition,  the scholarship of IR in India doesn’t receive the same status and value as the scholarship in physical or hard sciences. This section of the paper is going to dwell on the substantial causes of the lack of new International relations theories and thought in general and its research in India.

Click Here To Download The Paper

Author: Chaitra Jogle