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Reservation and Affirmative Action: Models of Social, Integration in India and The United States

Arvind Sharma (Author)
Synopsis This book examines the principles underlining the policies of reservation and affirmative action adopted by two non-homogeneous and multi-ethnic societies – India and the USA. Despite the fact that the governments of both countries have, for over fifty years now, applied these measures to overcome discrimination based on caste and race respectively, the author maintains that there is no comprehensive account of the grounds on which either reservations or affirmative action can be intellectually justified. Addressing the key question – What is being affirmed through affirmative action? – the author seeks the answer along four lines: What is the religious component of such an affirmation, if any? Is there a moral principle (or principles) underlying this affirmation? Is this affirmation being advocated on the basis of ethical principles with which modern liberal thought is imbued? Is the doctrine of human rights invoked in such an affirmation? These four ‘terms of discourse’ offer a framework to come to grips with the vexed issues involved in the intellectual justification of such policies and to promote a rational understanding of this complex and highly emotive subject. With its unusual and original arguments, this book will attract a wide readership among sociologists, political scientists and the general public.
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About the author

Arvind Sharma

ARVIND SHARMA was born in Varanasi, India. He earned a B.A. in History, Economics, and Sanskrit from Allahabad University in 1958 and continued his interests in economics at Syracuse University, earning an M.A. in 1970. Pursuing a lifelong interest in comparative religion, Dr. Sharma gained an M.T.S. in 1974 and then a Ph.D. in Sanskrit and Indian Studies from Harvard University in 1978. He succeeded to the Birks Chair of Comparative Religion at McGill University in Montreal, Canada and was the first Infinity Foundation Visiting Professor of Indic Studies at Harvard University. He has published over fifty books and five hundred articles in the fields of comparative religion, Hinduism, Indian philosophy and ethics, and the role of women in religion. Widely cited as an authority on Hinduism, amongst his most note-worthy publications are The Hindu Gita: Ancient and Classical Interpretations of the Bhagavadgita (1986), The Experien-tial Dimension of Advaita Vedanta (1993), Our Religions: The Seven World Religions Introduced by Pre-eminent Scholars from Each Tradition (1994), The Philosophy of Religion: A Buddhist Perspective (1995), Classical Hindu Thought: An Introduction (2000), and The Study of Hinduism (2003).

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Bibliographic information

Title Reservation and Affirmative Action: Models of Social, Integration in India and The United States
Author Arvind Sharma
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2005
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 0761933808
length 195p., Glossary; Bibliography; Index; 23cm.