The fear of the firangi

Ramachandra Guha discovers that “Bitter enemies though they might be, the Marxist left and the saffron right are united by what can only be described as an irrational fear of the foreigner.”

He was at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University recently, and asked who had spoken before him:
“They named a Marxist economist. And what did she speak on, I enquired. On how multinational outfits such as this one should not be allowed to contaminate the purity of the JNU campus….
“Why does your professor oppose this Nescafé outlet?” I asked. “Because she feels we should encourage indigenous initiatives,” they answered. “Do you know where her own doctoral degree is from?” I asked. They didn’t know, so I supplied the answer — the University of Cambridge. “When you next meet your professor,” I said sarcastically, “ask her one question on my behalf — when she travels by plane to international meetings, does she carry a south Indian filter and Coorg coffee powder with her, or does she quietly drink the beverage offered her on the flight?””

4 comments

  1. This is a wonderful blog you have here. I came to know about your blog from NewPages.com’s site. I had visited that page many times before but unfortunately never came across your blog’s listing.I thoroughly enjoyed reading the posts on your blog and decided to add my comment on this post. I so agree with Guha. People are ready to drop the “videshi” stuff as soon as it has served them the purpose of putting them where they are. People go and earn in dollars and come back and shun the act of going abroad. I am not saying that matters of foreign origin HAVE TO BE adopted, but hypocrisy has many veils of late…

  2. Check this out:Lunacy of the “wholly non-political” – A Reply to Ramachandra Guhahttp://studentsolidarity.blogspot.com/Guha’s article makes no point that hasn’t been heard before; the blog i’ve linked to above reveals that is is also highly irresponsible. And his sarcasm in this case seems strange considering that he is oft heard making noises about the authenticity (or lack thereof) of south asian academics, based precisely on whether they study/live abroad or in india… And frankly, i’m more than a little tired of his nostalgia for the nehruvian moment – which he imagines as the perfect liberal open society… which it was not.trisha

  3. Check this out:Lunacy of the “wholly non-political” – A Reply to Ramachandra Guhahttp://studentsolidarity.blogspot.com/Guha’s article makes no point that hasn’t been heard before; the blog i’ve linked to above reveals that is is also highly irresponsible. And his sarcasm in this case seems strange considering that he is oft heard making noises about the authenticity (or lack thereof) of south asian academics, based precisely on whether they study/live abroad or in india… And frankly, i’m more than a little tired of his nostalgia for the nehruvian moment – which he imagines as the perfect liberal open society… which it was not.trisha

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