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Thursday, June 1, 2023

Hinduphobia’s validity has nothing to do with the merits or demerits of the term ‘Islamophobia’

“Hinduphobia’s validity has nothing to do with the merits or demerits of the term ‘Islamophobia’”, by Vamsee Juluri, Firstpost, May 8, 2023:

“In his recent articles, Professor Gautam Sen makes a number of points about the growing use of the word “Hinduphobia” by Hindus in the UK and elsewhere. Some of these points are spot on:

“Hindu activists on both sides of the Atlantic and their organisations are now mobilised to define Hinduphobia and gain official recognition for the alleged phenomenon, with the usual display of intellectual confusion and lack of political nous. Offshoots of the RSS are especially energised on this matter without grasping what Hinduphobia might actually mean and exactly what practical goals and political measures potentially are implied by it. The effective monkey balancing of Hinduphobia with the non sequitur counterpart of Islamophobia is the first illustration of the intellectual and political disarray of Hindu activists. The practising lawyers, banking financiers and IT professionals, who have preempted the discourse on Hinduism, mostly lack domain knowledge though their moneyed status seems to override the need for it.”

I wish though, that Professor Sen had taken his argument at this stage in a different direction. Given the dismal political, commercial and anti-intellectual realities in the way Hindu organisations have tended to operate, what would he see as the role of the independent intellectual, activist, or indeed, ordinary immigrant Hindu parent living abroad, in terms of their approach to organized, pervasive, and growing anti-Hindu rhetoric, action, and now, seemingly, even legislation.

Is the concern only one of semantics, that “Hinduphobia” sounds like “Islamophobia” and will weaken the Hindu case before a, presumably, white, conservative jury? I suspect that Professor Sen knows the issue is deeper than that yet. Yet, he makes the same argument that many Hindu leaders and social media influencers have made before, that saying “Hinduphobia” will somehow make Hindus vulnerable to association with Muslim claims of “Islamophobia,” a term that he believes is heading for “intellectual bankruptcy….”

Read the full article at Firstpost.com

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