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Twin Tolerations & Secularism

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 12:27 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 27.4 
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In this paper I will evaluate Stepan’s article about “twin tolerations” in the light of Chatterjee’s article which is about the application of “secularism” in India. The subject they work on is different than each other but at the same there are some similarities. There are points which coincide between Stefan and Chatterjee and points where they’re opposed. In the rest of the paper I will make the evaluation by pointing out those differences and similarities step by step.

Firstly, I   will briefly tell about the subject of papers. Stepan’s paper is about his objections to theorists like Huntington whom expects a religiously driven III. World War because of eastern civilizations’ anti-democratic cultural character. Stepan mainly objects the public belief in the west on rigid separation of church and state and opposes Huntington by showing the democratic movements in eastern cultures. Stepan relates the undemocratic practices not to cultural characterization of non-western cultures but to the harmful effects of military rules in those countries.

Contrary to Stepan, Chatterjee is questioning the applicability of liberal-democratic understanding of secularism in Indian concept. According to Chatterjee there are serious problems in the applicability of secularism to post-colonial states like India. This prbolems can be seen in the religious reform period in India which caused the state to transgress the liberal-democratic principles of secularism and “Both the legislature and the courts were led into the exercise of religious doctrine on religious grounds.”   To solve the jurisdiction problem in India, Chatterjee is advocating communal cultural rights for minorities against the individual rights universalism. To resist homogenization adherents, Chatterjee takes support from Foucault’s ideas about governmentality which is: the containment of juridical sovereignty by governmental technology. Then Chatterjee changes Foucault’s concept a bit.

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