Bongop’o'ndit rips apart another Pankaj Mishra article:
Pankaj Mishra writes an opinion piece for Outlook’s India at 60 issue , seemingly cautioning on excessive championing of and reveling in India’s current resurgence at the cost of insensitivity to myriad problem that still plague the country. I say seemingly because that’s how he starts, and then meanders along without meaning much, while ending with a totally different point.
Mishra’s initial contention is that much of the current western world press are feeding a mistaken delusion of India’s potential to be a global economic, political and even cultural superpower (replacing the US). This he claims, is in the self-interest of Americans and that as Indians we should not avoid reality-checks (he even goes as far as to suggest that India will never really be able to achieve US’s geopolitical hegemony, and therefore should not aspire to). Finally, in an act that could only be described as self-fellatio, he claims that the ‘intelligentsia’ (such as him) are the only ones that can protect India from impeding doom of future development!
I could point out everything that’s wrong with the picture, but let’s just say that I have no issues with parts of Mishra’s theory: India faces numerous problems (particularly in public health and infrastructure) such that one should not get carried away by hyperboles. Unfortunately, by attacking a straw man of chauvinistic nationalism, Mishra is being intellectually dishonest. [Recurring Decimals]
Here’s an older fisking of Mishra