Gandhi on World Affairs

Gandhi on World Affairs

Gandhi on World Affairs

Gandhi on World Affairs

Excerpt

Among the leading names of modern history that of Mohandas K. Gandhi is respected by many men for its association with principle, nationalism and pacifism. Although much has been written about the man, his ideas and conduct, more remains to be known and understood. Especially there is a need to examine his thinking about issues with international significance. It is here that this book finds its purpose--to bring together his main views on world affairs and to evaluate their relevance for today.

The book begins with a review of basic influences on Gandhi's thought and of his public career that extended from Victorian times to the atomic age. There follows a summary of his more important beliefs which make up his political philosophy. His ideas about international relations are then presented under topical headings and traced chronologically before they are assessed.

The scope of international relations in this book includes the traditional subjects of war, peace and foreign policy. Also, the book covers Gandhi's ideas about the movement of science and technology into the underdeveloped nations, and the encounters of great religions and races. These are included in the belief that intercultural relations deserve increased recognition by those who write about international problems.

I have tried to benefit by a number of studies of Gandhi's thought and comments on its significance. Anyone who attempts to write in this field is indebted to many others to whom acknowledgment through footnotes is a meager tribute. With certain interpretations of Gandhi's ideas and their application I have found reason to differ and now offer my reappraisals.

The original material for this book was examined in a variety of sources. Among these is Indian Opinion, the South African newspaper Gandhi founded in 1903 and published until 1914, a source rarely investigated for the light it throws on a critical period of his life before he earned his place in world affairs. Observation of the Indian scene in 1944-1946 gave me a brief yet helpful introduction to Gandhi's nation then emerging out of colonial status into freedom with its rights and problems. My first research efforts began in 1954 under Professor Morley Ayearst of New York University when I became aware of the . . .

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