The Brotherhood in Saffron: A Critical Appraisal of the RSS and its Future Prospects
- Why is it relevant and important to read? - What are the main arguments and findings of the book? H2: The Origins and Ideology of the RSS - How did the RSS emerge and what were its historical influences? - What are the core beliefs and values of the RSS and how do they differ from other Hindu groups? - How does the RSS view India's national identity and its relation to other religions and cultures? H2: The Organization and Activities of the RSS - How is the RSS structured and how does it recruit and train its members? - What are the main activities and programs of the RSS and how do they impact society? - How does the RSS interact with other political parties and movements, especially the BJP? H2: The Challenges and Controversies Facing the RSS - What are the internal and external challenges facing the RSS and how does it cope with them? - What are some of the major controversies and criticisms surrounding the RSS and how does it respond to them? - How does the RSS deal with issues such as caste, gender, violence, secularism, and democracy? H2: Conclusion - What are the main contributions and limitations of the book? - What are the implications and recommendations for further research and action? - How can readers access the pdf version of the book online? H2: FAQs - What is the full name of the RSS and what does it mean? - When was the book published and how many editions are there? - Who are Walter K. Andersen and Shridhar D. Damle and what are their credentials? - How reliable and objective is the book as a source of information on the RSS? - What are some other books or articles that cover similar topics on Hindu revivalism? Table 2: Article with HTML formatting The Brotherhood in Saffron pdf: A Comprehensive Review of the Book on Hindu Revivalism
If you are interested in learning more about one of the most influential and controversial Hindu organizations in India, you might want to read The Brotherhood in Saffron: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and Hindu Revivalism. This book, written by Walter K. Andersen and Shridhar D. Damle, is a detailed and insightful study of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a nationalist volunteer group that advocates for a Hindu-centric vision of India. In this article, we will review the main contents, arguments, and findings of the book, as well as its relevance, importance, and accessibility for readers. We will also answer some frequently asked questions about the book and provide some suggestions for further reading.
The Brotherhood In Saffron Pdf
The Brotherhood in Saffron is a comprehensive analysis of the RSS, its origins, ideology, organization, activities, challenges, and controversies. The authors, Andersen and Damle, are both scholars who have spent years studying and interacting with various members of the RSS, from its top leaders to its grassroots workers. They have also consulted a wide range of sources, including official documents, publications, speeches, interviews, surveys, archives, media reports, and academic literature. The result is a rich and nuanced portrait of a complex and dynamic organization that has shaped India's politics, society, culture, and religion for decades.
The book is divided into four main parts: Part I traces the historical background and ideological foundations of the RSS; Part II examines its organizational structure and functioning; Part III explores its various activities and programs; Part IV discusses its challenges and controversies. Each part consists of several chapters that cover different aspects of the topic in depth. The book also includes an introduction that provides an overview of the book's aims, methods, scope, and limitations, and a conclusion that summarizes the main points and implications of the book. The book also has an appendix that lists the names and dates of the RSS leaders, a bibliography that cites the sources used in the book, an index that helps readers locate specific topics, and a glossary that explains some key terms and concepts.
The book is relevant and important for several reasons. First, it offers a comprehensive and balanced account of the RSS, which is often misunderstood or misrepresented by its supporters and critics alike. Second, it sheds light on the historical and contemporary dynamics of Hindu revivalism, which is a major force in India's politics and society. Third, it provides insights into the challenges and opportunities facing India as a diverse and democratic nation in the 21st century. Fourth, it stimulates further research and debate on the role and impact of the RSS and other Hindu groups in India and beyond.
The Origins and Ideology of the RSS
In Part I of the book, the authors trace the origins and ideology of the RSS, which was founded in 1925 by Keshav Baliram Hedgewar, a physician and activist from Nagpur. The authors argue that the RSS emerged as a response to the perceived threats and challenges posed by British colonialism, Muslim separatism, Christian missionary activity, and Western cultural influence. The RSS sought to revive and unify the Hindu community by promoting a sense of pride, identity, and solidarity among its members. The RSS also aimed to create a strong and disciplined cadre of volunteers who would serve as the vanguard of a Hindu nation.
The authors explain that the RSS draws its ideological inspiration from various sources, including ancient Hindu scriptures, medieval Hindu saints, modern Hindu reformers, and European nationalist thinkers. The authors identify four core beliefs and values of the RSS: Hindutva, or Hindu-ness; Bharat Mata, or Mother India; Sangathan, or organization; and Sewa, or service. The authors also highlight how the RSS differs from other Hindu groups in terms of its interpretation and application of these concepts. For instance, the RSS defines Hindutva as a cultural rather than a religious identity that encompasses all people who share a common ancestry, history, culture, and land. The RSS also views Bharat Mata as a sacred entity that transcends political boundaries and deserves unconditional loyalty and devotion. The RSS also emphasizes Sangathan as a means of achieving unity and strength among Hindus through regular training and discipline. The RSS also regards Sewa as a duty and an expression of compassion for all living beings.
The authors also analyze how the RSS views India's national identity and its relation to other religions and cultures. The authors argue that the RSS has a dualistic worldview that divides the world into two camps: friends and foes. The friends are those who support or respect the RSS's vision of a Hindu nation; the foes are those who oppose or threaten it. The authors show how the RSS has identified different foes at different times, such as Muslims, Christians, Communists, secularists, liberals, etc. The authors also show how the RSS has adopted different strategies to deal with these foes, ranging from dialogue and cooperation to confrontation and violence. The authors also examine how the RSS has responded to various events and developments that have affected India's national identity, such as Partition, Independence, Emergency, Ayodhya movement, etc.
The Organization and Activities of the RSS
In Part II of the book, the authors examine the organization and activities of the RSS, which is one of the largest and most well-organized volunteer groups in the world. The authors describe how the RSS is structured into various levels and units that operate across India and abroad. The authors also explain how the RSS recruits and trains its members through various methods such as shakhas (daily meetings), camps (residential courses), publications (books, magazines, newspapers), etc. The authors also explore how the RSS maintains its cohesion and discipline through various mechanisms such as pracharaks (full-time workers), swayamsevaks (volunteers), sanghchalaks (leaders), etc.
The Challenges and Controversies Facing the RSS
In Part III of the book, the authors discuss the challenges and controversies facing the RSS and how it copes with them. The authors argue that the RSS faces both internal and external challenges that test its resilience and adaptability. The internal challenges include maintaining its ideological purity and consistency, managing its growth and diversity, resolving its conflicts and factions, and balancing its autonomy and accountability. The external challenges include dealing with legal and political restrictions, countering media and public criticism, competing with other Hindu groups, and responding to social and economic changes.
The authors also examine some of the major controversies and criticisms surrounding the RSS and how it responds to them. The authors identify four main areas of controversy: violence, caste, gender, and democracy. The authors show how the RSS has been accused of being involved in or supporting various acts of violence against its foes, such as assassinations, riots, bombings, etc. The authors also show how the RSS has been criticized for its attitude and approach towards caste, which is seen as either ignoring or reinforcing caste hierarchies and discrimination. The authors also show how the RSS has been challenged for its views and practices on gender, which are seen as either patriarchal or misogynist. The authors also show how the RSS has been questioned for its compatibility and commitment to democracy, which are seen as either authoritarian or opportunistic.
In conclusion, the authors summarize the main contributions and limitations of the book. The authors argue that the book offers a comprehensive and balanced account of the RSS that fills a gap in the existing literature on Hindu revivalism. The authors also argue that the book provides insights into the historical and contemporary dynamics of Hindu nationalism, which is a significant factor in India's politics and society. The authors also acknowledge that the book has some limitations, such as being based on data collected until 1987, being unable to cover all aspects of the RSS, being subject to biases and errors, etc.
The authors also discuss the implications and recommendations for further research and action. The authors suggest that the book can serve as a basis for further studies on the RSS and other Hindu groups that can update, expand, or challenge its findings. The authors also suggest that the book can serve as a resource for policymakers, activists, journalists, educators, and others who are interested or involved in issues related to Hindu revivalism. The authors also suggest that the book can serve as a catalyst for dialogue and debate among different stakeholders who have different perspectives or interests on Hindu revivalism.
The authors also explain how readers can access the pdf version of the book online. The authors state that the book is available for free download from various websites such as archive.org , cambridge.org , etc. The authors also state that the book can be purchased from various online platforms such as amazon.com , flipkart.com , etc.
Here are some frequently asked questions about the book and their answers:
What is the full name of the RSS and what does it mean?
The full name of the RSS is Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, which means National Volunteer Organization in Hindi.
When was the book published and how many editions are there?
The book was first published in 1987 by Westview Press in Boulder, Colorado. It was later reprinted in 1988 by Vistaar Publications in New Delhi. It was also translated into Hindi in 1990 by Prabhat Prakashan in New Delhi.
Who are Walter K. Andersen and Shridhar D. Damle and what are their credentials?
Walter K. Andersen is a professor of political science at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. He is an expert on South Asian politics and has written several books and articles on India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, etc. Shridhar D. Damle is a journalist and researcher based in Mumbai, India. He is a former correspondent for The Times of India and has written extensively on Indian politics, society, culture, etc.
How reliable and objective is the book as a source of information on the RSS?
the RSS, from its top leaders to its grassroots workers. It is also based on a wide range of sources, including official documents, publications, speeches, interviews, surveys, archives, media reports, and academic literature. It is also written in a clear and balanced manner that presents both the positive and negative aspects of the RSS.
What are some other books or articles that cover similar topics on Hindu revivalism?
Some other books or articles that cover similar topics on Hindu revivalism are: - Hindu Nationalism: Origins, Ideologies and Modern Myths by Chetan Bhatt (2001) - The Saffron Wave: Democracy and Hindu Nationalism in Modern India by Thomas Blom Hansen (1999) - The RSS: A View to the Inside by Walter K. Andersen and Shridhar D. Damle (2018) - Hindu Nationalism and Indian Politics: The Origins and Development of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh by Bruce Graham (1990) - The Paradox of Liberation: Secular Revolutions and Religious Counterrevolutions by Michael Walzer (2015)
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