Political Science Answer Writing Practice - Week 7 - Question 6
90 Days Political Science Answer Writing Practice Question 2 for 19-Jan-2018
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19-Jan-2018 - Question 2
Critically examine the Radical Humanist perspective on the Indian National movement. 200 words. 2016
The radical humanist perspective is reflected in the writing of M N Roy who was one of the tallest political theorists of the 20th century. He has been transformed remarkably with the experiences he went through and therefore, held ideologically extreme beliefs in a different time span of his life. He had been a believer in revolutionary terrorism, a staunch Marxist who travelled the whole world to propagate Marxism and was the advisor to Lenin for India. He criticized the methods of Gandhi and Congress and held their nonviolence as violence on masses. Eventually, he drifted away from communism as he realised that revolution can t be a solution in itself, and therefore can only be a means to an end.
In his Future of Indian Politics , Roy emphasized the need for a mass political party to mobilize and strengthen the masses for collective action. A socialist India could not be built overnight according to Roy. There has to be an achievement of free Indian democracy, followed by the transformation of the social order into a socialist democracy. The roots of Roy s radical humanism can well be traced to his journal Independent India which was later renamed as Radical Humanist. His radical humanism was a critique of communism, nationalism and spiritualism. He believed in materialism which according to Roy, represents knowledge as it really exists.
He was primarily concerned with the freedom of an individual. For Roy, independence was a necessary immediate step but not an end in itself. The communism gives priority to collective ego of class where nationalism gives individual freedom for the sake of collective ego of a nation. He proposed radical democracy and cosmopolitan nature of free individuals. Reason, morality and freedom are the pillars of Roy s theory. Roy thought of freedom as a supreme value. While rationality, Roy says, provides dynamism to the individual, the urge for freedom gives him a direction.
Condemning Gandhi s Congress as spinners association and Gandhi as bundle of contradictions , his philosophy, only medievalism. Roy regarded an individual as a sovereign entity, and the individual should be the basis of the political order. Roy advocated partyless democracy, where maximum power should be at the local level with the communities. Roy considered his politics as humanist politics as he believed party politics as power politics.
MN Roy was perhaps among the earliest few to realize the dangers of Marxism on one side and the inadequacies of Parliamentary Democracy on the other. He recognized the need for a new kind of socio-economic philosophy, a practical-theory of life (not speculation) that is guided by humanism which would re-organize social life. By humanism he meant respect for the man as Man; and, essentially, where the individual is at the center of all spheres of human activities (unlike in Marxism). Roy in his philosophy devised means to ensure human freedom and progress. Remembering Bagha Jatin who "personified the best of mankind", Roy worked "for the ideal of establishing a social order in which the best in man could be manifest." In 1947, he elaborated his theses into a manifesto, New Humanism, expected to be as important as the Communist Manifesto by Marx a century earlier.