The Meaning of Patriotism/Nationalism
Etihas video magazine - Issue 4, April 2016
Nationalism and patriotism are popular subjects of discussion in India today as some zealous individuals try to test everyone else for their love for the nation or desh prem. Should a narrow definition or identity of Indian nationalism be imposed on everyone. Or should our nationalism be more inclusive and flexible to incorporate the diversity of cultures and viewpoints. These themes were discussed in a convention held at Delhi’s Gandhi Peace Foundation on 12th March 2016, (organized by Pragatisheel Lekhak Sangha, Janwadi Lekhak Sangha, Jan Sanskriti Manch, Dalit Lekhak Sangh and Sahitya Samvad, under the banner Azad Watan Azad Zuban. It has been decided to hold regular conventions to discuss and celebrate various contemporary issues that the country is struggling with. The theme of the first meeting, attended by a number of scholars, artists and authors, was ‘Desh Prem ke Maaine – The Meaning of Patriotism/Nationalism'. The phrase ‘desh prem’ (literally, love for the land) doesn’t really translate as patriotism or nationalism, the two of which themselves are different concepts. This meeting largely comprised of talks and songs on a range of topics, mostly critical of the present day political situation in India. On this page, we first bring some songs recited or sung by poets and by at least one theatre group. In the next instalment, we will feature the lectures/talks given by many scholars. Details about this event can be seen here.