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Making Identity CountBuilding a National Identity Database$
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Ted Hopf and Bentley B. Allan

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190255473

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190255473.001.0001

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The World’s Largest Democracy Between Two Futures

The World’s Largest Democracy Between Two Futures

Indian National Identity in 2010, Hindi Sources

(p.132) 8 The World’s Largest Democracy Between Two Futures
Making Identity Count

Shivaji Kumar

Oxford University Press

In the Hindi sources, India is portrayed as a democratic nation oriented to the future. The democratic discourse emphasizes transparency and competence in Indian politics. However, two counter-discourses, centered on corruption and division, associate India with a lack of accountability, state failure, and political violence. These themes undermine India’s status as a democracy. If these two challenger discourses grew stronger, they may adversely affect India’s standing as an emerging power in international politics and would undermine its support for Western democratic hegemony. A final discourse articulates an aspirational place for a modern India in a bright future but it is not clear whether the future will be Western or Asian. This discourse identifies India with economic growth and social-cultural modernization. While some of these themes lend support to Western neoliberalism, elsewhere in the discourse the negative effects of Western capitalism are highlighted, tempering India’s support for Western hegemony.

Keywords:   India, Democracy, neoliberalism, development, division, corruption

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