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Emerging out of the Renaissance and the industrial revolution, the set of disciplines that got institutionalised as the social sciences were fashioned in Europe. However, what were areas of scholarly inquiry responding to specifically Western problems and concerns, laid claim to universality in course of time and were uncritically accepted as being so until they began to be challenged by non-Western thinkers in the second half of the twentieth century.
Bringing together 18 essays by distinguished social scientists, this volume is a major contribution to the debate on the indigenisation of the social sciences. It addresses two central questions from a primarily Asian perspective:
- Are the social sciences that originated in the West, and are essentially indigenous to it, universal for the rest?
- Can the universal explain the particular, unless the universals in the particulars of different cultural contexts contribute to the construction of the universal?
Some of the issues explored in this twin framework are:
- The de-parochialisation of Western social science.
- The concept of the ?captive mind?, which fails to fathom its captivity.
- The limitations of Western social sciences on crucial issues such as modernisation, economic liberalisation and structural adjustment.
- The validity and potential of indigenous models of development as demonstrated by Bhutan?s concept of Gross National Happiness.
- Oral traditions and their potential for universal knowledge.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Indigeneity and Universality in Social Science PARTHA NATH MUKHERJI
Social Science and the Quest for a Just Society IMMANUEL WALLESTEIN
The Captive Mind and Creative Development SYED HUSSEIN ALATAS
The Call for Indigenisation YOGESH ATAL
Economic Theory and Development Practice: Stiglitz?s Critique and the Sri Lankan Experience SAMAN KELEGAMA and CHRIS RODRIGO
Pseudo-modernisation and the Formation of Youth Identities in Sri Lanka S T HETTIGE
Poverty in a Rural Economy: Opportunities and Threats?A Case Study of Nepal BISHWAMBHER PYAKURYAL
Inquiring Minds and Inquiry Frames AJEET N MATHUR
NGO Failure and the Need to Bring Back the State S AKBAR ZAIDI
Values and Development: Gross National Happiness LYONPO JIGMI Y THINLEY
Gross National Happiness: Bhutan?s Vision of Development and its Challenges STEFAN PRIESNER
Glimpses of Social Structure in Ancient India: Kautilya?s Relevance for Sociology in South Asia RANGALAL SEN
Institution Building in South Asia: Dilemmas and Experiences T K OOMMEN
Tradition and Actors: ?Communities? Reconfigured in Nineteenth-century India I N MUKHERJI
Consultative Managerial Leadership Style in India: A Viable Alternative SATISH KUMAR KALRA
The Indigenous and the Modern: Education in South Asia JACOB AIKARA
Urban Sociology of South Asia: The problem of Formulating the Indegenous CHANDAN SENGUPTA