From Ayodhya to Sabarimala, Indian politicians continue to appeal to religious sentiments for building vote banks. Over the past decade, several political scientists have tried to study how these appeals to religion impact voting behaviour. However, much of this analysis may be based on an inadequate understanding of Hinduism, according to a new study by Ajay Verghese of the University of California.
Existing research conceptualizes religion largely through the lens of Abrahamic monotheistic faiths such as Christianity, Judaism and Islam, but understanding eastern religions require a substantively different way of thinking about religion, says Verghese.....Read more
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