In an age when fundamentalist ideologies are setting the tone for all discourses and defining the contours of the public and
private lives of individuals, an urgent need arises to engage ourselves with these dangerous ideologies and explore ways of
finding viable alternatives to them. Despite their ideological differences, basically all fundamentalist voices propagate an
essentialized notion of reality, dismissing and demolishing all other voices that are not in tune with their version. This way of thought fosters a utopian dream for a society based on immutable principles. At this juncture, an ideology translates into concrete political actions that include not only unleashing propaganda against the people who are considered as the other, but also adopting violence as a means of political confrontation. Moreover, this is a reciprocal process. While
the intellectual naivety of fundamentalists results in political terrorism, their political vandalism leads to intellectual stifling, by colonizing the space for intellectual debate. The controversial decision by Penguin to revoke and pulp all the copies of Wendy Donigers’s book, The Hindus: An Alternative History, following the reservations raised against it by a Hindu fundamentalist organization, is the latest example of this dangerous trend. Thus the alternatives to fundamentalist ideologies have to be sought not by physical encounter with the fundamentalists but by nurturing those sources of survival that have nourished humankind since time immemorial and that characterize the human
Dr. Hari M. G. and Komalesha, H. S., “Inscribing Our Times in an Epic: Arun Kolatkar’s Sarpa Satra”, TAB: The Journal of Poetry & Poetics, vol. 2, 2014.