IDEAS OF INDIA seeks to further the study of modern Indian political thought by drawing attention to the vibrant public sphere that took shape in the century prior to Independence. Sadly, most of the writers that commanded this stage, and endowed the Republic with its distinctive ‘argumentative’ ethos, have now been forgotten. The hope is that recalling these urbane and often brilliant thinkers will foster a richer and deeper understanding of Indian intellectual history.




This collection seeks to identify and catalog important contributions to Indian political thought as it evolved over latter half of the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth century. Its scope is limited, however. It focuses solely on English-language sources (translations are included when possible). One consequence is that the figures profiled here may be seen as embodying the views of social and political elites. Another consequence is that this archive may fail to capture debates conducted in the vernacular or otherwise unrepresented in English-language publications. These potential shortcomings should spur others to catalog discussions occurring outside or even in opposition to the ones highlighted here.




This archive contains three kinds of material.


First, it features biographical materials and photographs extracted from out-of-copyright publications. As these materials may have been abbreviated in the interest of space, they should not be cited as presented. Rather they should be cross-checked against the primary sources, which have been cited.


Second, this archive hosts a searchable database of the tables of contents of prominent English-language journals published prior to 1950. This database has been constructed through painstaking archival research. However no guarantees are given as to the completeness and correctness of the entries. Users are encouraged to cross-check with the primary sources.


Third, this archive intends to serve as a repository of links to full-text versions of out-of-copyright texts. These links point to scanned PDF files hosted by publicly accessible websites like Google Books, Hathi Trust, and Archive.org. IDEAS OF INDIA does not host these files and is not responsible for their being publicly accessible.


Care has been taken to observe relevant copyright laws. Any violation of copyright is inadvertent and such material will be taken down upon notice. Correspondence should be sent to admin@ideasofindia.org.




This archive is maintained and edited by Rahul Sagar.


The research required to construct this website was supported by funding from the Department of Politics at Princeton University, the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, Yale-NUS College, the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy and the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore. These institutions are not responsible for this website or its contents, and are not affiliated with it in any respect.


Responsibility for errors, omissions, and compliance rests solely with Rahul Sagar, and no other person or institution.



Terms of Use

This archive functions on a non-commercial basis. Its purpose is purely educational. Printing or downloading of content for personal and non-commercial use only is therefore permitted. Any other redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in any form is prohibited. Commercial use of the content is prohibited. All copyrights belong to their respective owners.


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