I know I should be writing a TAM recap but this came across my inbox and I couldn’t resist.Â Some groups in India are upset about the messages being sent in a public school social studies textbook. Familiar, no? Not quite. In this case, it’s religious groups that are upset because they say the book promotes atheism and communism.
Indiaâ€™s three religions are presented, but citing certain historical events and generalises on that basis to claim that all three promote caste divisions in society. Religion is shown as a divisive force that removes the human dimension from the social fabric.â€
Sounds like a book I need to read.Â Alas, it’s a little tough to get much detail online – I can’t even find anything that tells me the title of the book. But although the couple of articles I found say that religious and secular groups are both against the book, the only articles I’ve found have had statements from Muslim and Catholic groups.
The president of the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), Panakkad Syed Mohammedali Shihab Thangal, on 19 June called on the authorities to withdraw a textbook that he claims promotes atheism and anti-religious sentiments, threatening public protests in case his demands are not met. He is backed in this by the United Democratic Front (EDF), a Congress Party ally. Members of the Kerala Students Union (KSU) and Youth Congress activists also burnt copies of the textbook.
Why do people still think burning books is effective?Â Is it really sending any sort of positive message?Anyway, I really want to check this book out – if anyone has any more details on it, let me know!Â I’ll also post a follow up if IÂ learn more.