Dipankar Gupta brings together social theory with policy practice to enlarge our understanding of the difference that democracy makes to the life of a nation. Unlike nationalism, democracy takes our attention away from the past to the future by focusing on the specific concerns of ‘citizenship’. Historical victories or defeats, blood and soil are now nowhere as relevant as the creation of a foundational base where individuals have equal, and quality, access to health, education, and even urban services. The primary consideration, therefore, is on empowering ‘citizens’ as a common category and not ‘people’ of any specific community or class. When citizens precede all other considerations, the notion of the ‘public’ too gets its fullest expression. Differences between citizens are not denied, in fact encouraged, but only after achieving a basic unity first. This book argues that the call of citizenship not only advances democracy, but social science as well.
About the Author
DIPANKAR GUPTA is one of India’s leading sociologists and public intellectuals. During his distinguished career, he has held several professorial positions both in India and abroad. To name only four, he is a former Professor of Sociology, at The Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi and Centre for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University. He was also the Leverhulme Professor in London School of Economics, and Fulbright Professor in the University of Massachusetts.