Irfan Ahmad makes the far-reaching argument that potent systems and modes for self-critique as well as critique of others are inherent in Islam--indeed, critique is integral to its fundamental tenets large part on South Asian traditions.
Over the Years, a collection of 106 short articles, offers us interesting sidelights on the currents and cross- currents in the public life of India during two distinctive periods: (I) 1987 to 1991 and (II ) 2010 to the present.
The line that Mortimer Durand drew across a small map in 1893 has bled the Pashtun heart ever since. More than a century later both sides of that line remain restless. But the mystery behind what actually happened on 12 November 1893 has never been solved. Why did Amir Abdur Rahman sign blindly on a document? Was he forced to do so?
What went wrong for the West in Afghanistan? Why couldn't a global coalition led by the world's preeminent military and economic power defeat "a bunch of farmers in plastic sandals on dirt bikes" in a conflict that outlasted both the World Wars combined? Was it the nature of the country, the flaw in the outcome they wanted, or their unreliable local allies?
Wiry shrubs and clumps of brown-green fill the semi-arid landscape of Kutch in western India. Many of these patches have, over the years, made way for "more productive" agricultural land. This greening of "wasteland" is, however, degrading a precious and largely ignored ecosystem -- the grasslands. And, as a result,