Arudra Burra, Philosophy PhD candidate

Mon, 11/19/2007
4:30 - 6:00 PM, Kerstetter Room, Marx Hall
Event Category: 
Graduate Students

Arudra Burra is a PhD candidate in Philosophy at Princeton University, and has a JD from the Yale Law School. His philosophical interests are in moral and political philosophy, broadly speaking: he is writing a dissertation on the concept of exploitation (and related concepts such as coercion and blackmail). Though the dissertation touches on a number of legal themes, Arudra's main area of interest vis-a-vis the law is in South Asian legal history, particularly around the period of Indian independence in 1947.


The ICS and the Raj: 1919-47
The Indian Civil Service (ICS) was the administrative arm of the British Raj in India, and was closely identified with colonial rule. One picture of the ICS is summed up in the title of Philip Woodruff's famous history -- The Men Who Ruled India (a title echoed by David Gilmour's recent book, The Ruling Caste).

Not surprisingly, the ICS was the target of nationalist sentiment before Independence: what is surprising, perhaps, is that the newly Independent Indian state chose to retain the ICS structure and personnel more-or-less unchanged after 1947. My paper is a study of how this came to be -- how was it that the colonial administrative structure survived more-or-less intact through a major change of political regime?

In this LEGS session, Arudra will present a portion of a much larger paper.  The long version is available here. For more on Arudra, see his LAPA page.