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Prakash Kona is a writer, teacher and researcher who lives in Hyderabad, India. He is currently Professor at the Department of English Literature, The English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU), Hyderabad.
(4 comments) SHARE Friday, June 5, 2015 Government of India versus the Ambedkar Periyar Study Circle
This might be a remarkably brief synopsis of the incident: however, the fact remains that the Ambedkar-Periyar Study Circle (APSC), a student association was derecognized by the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Madras through a mail dated May 22, 2015 for allegedly creating "hatred" of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the "Hindus."
(13 comments) SHARE Saturday, March 7, 2015 Lynching the "Rapist": a horror greater than the Rape
I couldn't believe how happy the mob of mostly young men in Dimapur, Nagaland looked in their euphoria celebrating the lynching of an alleged rapist who also happens to be migrant labor from another state of India.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, September 19, 2015 Why the late President APJ Abdul Kalam never made an impression on me
In my view, Abdul Kalam was neither a phenomenal scientist nor an effectual leader. My own feeling is that he may have been indifferent to the economic dimension of social reality like most engineers, doctors and scientists who do not subscribe to the view that conscience is about responding to the plight of the weak and the downtrodden.
SHARE Sunday, April 12, 2015 Reflections on Cuba: from Communism to Consumerism
I began writing this short piece on Cuba in December 2012 after I returned home following a conference at the University of Havana. For some reason I took a long time to develop the argument, but, fundamentally, I remain convinced now, as I was then, that Cuba is the new consumer haven for American goods.
SHARE Wednesday, December 27, 2017 Have a Nice Day in a Post-Joke World
I want to touch on one episode from the 16th Season of Family Guy with the title "The D in Apartment 23" about Brian's racist tweet which I found interesting for its take on political correctness. Political correctness is a disease that unfortunately is connected to Internet-related developments which created a parallel social world other than the ones where people actually meet and discuss in day to day life.
(7 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 21, 2013 An American System, "Alien" to the Indian Mindset
This article is a reflection on the politics surrounding the arrest and body search of Ms. Devyani Khobragade an Indian consular officer in the US leading to a diplomatic row between India and the US -- at least from the Indian point of view.
(10 comments) SHARE Saturday, September 16, 2017 On being Definitionally Challenged
People who tend to use language without telling us what parameters they associate with the words they use, I have decided to call them "definitionally challenged"... to these abusers of language I have only one thing to say: read Rumi, Shakespeare and Wittgenstein.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 21, 2011 Anna Hazare: a cup of tea in a storm
Who is Anna Hazare fighting exactly if the very people who are India's enemies - the moneyed classes - are his back-end supporters!
(15 comments) SHARE Monday, January 12, 2015 Pourquoi Je ne suis pas Charlie Hebdo
The Charlie Hebdo tragedy is a thinly disguised parody of what used to be the "white man's burden" in the heydays of colonialism. It is therefore racist too by extension, a racism hiding behind discourses such as free speech within the "comfort zone" of western democracy.
(18 comments) SHARE Saturday, May 31, 2014 What has meritocracy to do with merit?
Meritocracy is another way of globalizing caste system by creating a system of social stratification separating the inferior from the superior. It is a way of making sure that the downtrodden, apart from the token few, never aspire to what by virtue of the system will go to those who inherit both wealth and power.
SHARE Monday, April 6, 2015 By birth Indian, by culture Hindu, and by faith Christian
The fears of Christian minorities in India are legitimate given the fact that there is a history of attacks on minorities through the use of mobs that would justify the fear. To dismiss those fears as imaginary as is being done by official media is seriously problematic and will not resolve issues at the ground level.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, February 26, 2018 The Politics of India's PM, Narendra Modi
Narendra Modi's formula for an "exam warrior" in politics has been unbelievably simple: communalize the masses and corporatize the government. Almost every social group has begun to adopt reactionary positions either as supporters or as opponents of Modi and his policies. India as a nation has never been as polarized along communal lines as it is now since the
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 18, 2014 What the Narendra Modi-led BJP regime means to the future of India
As the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi will write the obituary to the Nehruvian vision of a mixed economy that combined public enterprise with private initiative. In fact what this electoral victory might signify is the corporatization of the state where merit and conformism to the political order become the primary criteria for the ideal citizen.
(5 comments) SHARE Tuesday, May 20, 2014 Annihilation of Casteist Mindset
This is not a book review as such but a reflection on few aspects of the speech "Annihilation of Caste" by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar written to be presented in 1936 at the invitation of an anti-caste association in Lahore. There is nothing like caste as an unchanging category. Slavery was once upon a time a reality. What made it real was that there was something called the slave mentality and likewise a master mentality.
SHARE Saturday, February 24, 2018 God's own Country, Kerala, where God is fast asleep
The pictures of the poor mentally challenged tribal man from Kerala who was lynched for supposedly stealing rice are haunting to say the least. That look of utter vulnerability written all over his body tells us the story of human injustice and human suffering in the same breath.
(17 comments) SHARE Thursday, June 25, 2015 Putting the Charleston Church Shooting in Perspective
I personally don't think that these are ideologically motivated murders. On the contrary they are rooted in a social structure that has already categorized certain individuals as outsiders -- and someone as young as Dylann Roof merely needs a cause to enroll as an insider. In that sense Roof's mindset is not fundamentally different from that of the youth who are fighting for the ISIS in the Levant.
SHARE Friday, July 17, 2015 The vindictive and unfair sentencing of Oskar Groening
The sentencing of Oskar Groening, the so-called "book-keeper of Auschwitz" to four years in prison is a stupid, cruel and inhuman judgment that will result in increasing the feelings of anti-semitism and xenophobia rather than doing justice to the victims of Nazism.
(3 comments) SHARE Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Why the ISIS is winning in Europe
In the brutal war in Syria and in Iraq where either you murder or you get murdered it is most likely that the ISIS is losing the war on the ground, which may be one good reason why they are determined to prove their newsworthiness in Europe or the US. ISIS needs propaganda to achieve its goals as much as the west does to defeat them.
SHARE Tuesday, May 22, 2012 Why we need a Patriotic and not a Nationalist Media
I'm exploring the Orwellian distinction between nationalism and patriotism and why I think more and more global media espouses nationalism which is vicious by nature rather than patriotism which is closer to what common people really are and wish to be.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, December 30, 2012 Patriarchy, the Social Order and the Delhi Gangrape Victim
The twenty-three year old victim of brutal gang-rape on a New Delhi bus finally succumbed in a Singapore hospital following a period of physical and mental devastation -- a devastation that needs a different kind of imagination for it to be properly understood. The legitimization of violence in a country like India is an altogether different thing.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, March 23, 2018 Why Indians are obsessed with the private lives of actors
It's unbelievable how much interest Indians take in the private lives of actors. The context of course to what I am saying is the recent, unfortunate death of the actress Sridevi, perhaps one of the most popular women actors ever on the Indian screen.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, December 7, 2014 A View From India: Ferguson and Aftermath: A Bit too Black or White
The way the discourse has been shaped right from the very beginning was on preconceived terms. It began with a minority black "law-breaker" and an armed white law-enforcer backed by a powerful racist state and continues in the same vein. That's what I find problematic.
SHARE Friday, September 7, 2012 Book Review: Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy
Chris Hayes dismantles the myths of meritocracy: The book "Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy" is written with a certain passion as if in response to the need of a time -- " the increasing inequality, compartmentalization, and stratification of America in the post-meritocratic age" (212).
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, September 30, 2016 The Writing on the Kashmiri Wall
The writing on the Kashmiri wall is obvious to those who have eyes to see: either we create an inclusive order that is willing to accommodate the aspirations of the common people of Kashmir or we end up buying the loyalty of the elites with the Indian tax-payer's money and becoming brutally repressive with the masses in the way Israel operates while dealing with the Palestinian Territories.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, September 21, 2012 Why Muslims need to embrace a Politics of Moderation
It is as imperative for Muslims to embrace the politics of moderation as it is for the western governments and media to open space to the voices of moderate Muslims and give them an opportunity to be leaders in their communities.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, January 22, 2014 Arvind Kejriwal and his loony bin politics
The Aam Aadmi Party and its leader Kejriwal are anything but a serious reflection of the aspirations of the downtrodden masses. The recent mistreatment of black African women in Delhi by the law minister of the party actually establishes the racist and casteist nature of AAP politics.
SHARE Wednesday, November 30, 2016 The Myth of a Cashless Society
I wonder if PM Narendra Modi understands the gravity of the disaster unleashed on the poor masses thanks to the overnight project of demonetization. The ex-PM Manmohan Singh is right in calling it "organized loot" and "legalized plunder" except that the neo-liberal economic reforms which turned loot and plunder into virtues were initiated when Mr. Singh began his term as the Minister of Finance in 1991.
SHARE Tuesday, August 16, 2011 UK Riots 2011 -- A "Social Revolution" Yet to Take Place
Both the Norway attacks and UK disturbances are expressions of individual and collective bitterness and hatred towards a non-responsive and indifferent government that does not hesitate in using violence against them to keep a semblance of order.
SHARE Saturday, April 14, 2018 Horrific Images of BJP-misrule of India
The 18-year old girl raped by the brothers, one of them a member of the ruling party in power and the gruesome rape and murder of the 8-year old in Jammu and Kashmir are images of BJP-misrule of India.
SHARE Sunday, March 13, 2016 What it means being Indian
Each group of people imagines a characteristic or a set of traits that they feel intrinsically defines who they are. That makes Indianness fundamentally not so different from Pakistanness or Nepalness or Americanness
SHARE Sunday, November 1, 2015 Why Art need not be "Subversive" to bring about Social Change
I am responding to the article by the Indian film actor Ms. Nandita Das which makes the statement that, "If art was not subversive, conservatives would not feel threatened." In my view, Shakespeare and Dostoevsky are anything but subversive in the sense in which Nandita Das uses the term "subversive."
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 19, 2012 Ecuador and Julian Assange's Asylum
A nation honors itself through acts such as this one that Ecuador did in granting asylum to Julian Assange. The importance of Ecuador standing up to the UK government's intimidatory stance can hardly be ignored. It is not the same thing when a powerful nation dictates terms to those it views as inferiors and when the "inferiors" turn back to answer their so-called bosses.
SHARE Thursday, November 12, 2015 When students turn into trade unionists
Truthfulness and commitment to change are alien words in politics. For an intellectual they are sacred words. While I see Machiavellian behavior defining student politics, I wish that more of them would invest the same energy in thinking clearly and articulate for greater accommodation and inclusion of the weak and vulnerable sections into mainstream society.
SHARE Wednesday, February 17, 2016 Lives Matter: Black or White
When I read about "Black Lives Matter," the question that came to mind was: shouldn't they matter! And it wasn't a rhetorical response. The next question that came to mind was: do other lives, whether white or not-so-white, Jew or Arab, ought to matter as much as black lives! Yes, they do! Black lives do matter. Black lives should matter, but, more importantly, black lives also matter, as do other lives.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, July 17, 2014 "Eyeless" in Gaza
I wrote this article, with a change in few words, some years ago when Israel had done something similar to what it is doing today to Gaza. Strangely I realized that nothing fundamentally changed. This is only to emphasize the pathetic condition of the Palestinians under colonial occupation. "The Palestinians must defy the Israelis and live their freedom not as a possibility but as a reality."
SHARE Saturday, April 9, 2016 What I think of Student Nationalists from the National Institute of Technology, Kashmir
Wearing a badge of nationalism has never been a serious indication that someone loves their country. Those who love their country feel with its downtrodden classes and its oppressed women and children. They are not blind with hatred that destroys the soul. They think of innovative ways to make life meaningful for everyone who comes in contact with them especially those who are ostracized or without a home.
SHARE Friday, November 20, 2015 ISIS: "Rationalizing" an Invisible Enemy
In politics it is important to see your enemy as a rational person making rational choices and with the full consciousness of someone who knows what he is doing. The ISIS can be extremely rational in the way it operates while at the same time dedicate its rationalism to the most irrational of goals.