Nirmal and Augustina Mattoo Chair of Indic Humanities
Stony Brook New York, Department of Philosophy
Date: Wednesday, 7 August 2019
Time: 5:00 PM
Ahmedabad University, Room 106
GICT Building, Central Campus
Abstract: “If all the Upanishads and all the other scriptures happened all of a sudden to be reduced to ashes, and if only the first verse in the Ishopanishad were left in the memory of the Hindus, Hinduism would live forever.", said Mahatma Gandhi. With a brief introduction to Isha Upanishad and its unique place in Indian literature, this lecture will focus on just one phrase of this verse: "Do not covet, whose, after all is wealth?". Going through John Locke's philosophical justification of private property and its critique by Pierre Joseph Proudhon, the lecture will question the very idea of private ownership of wealth. It will try to argue, in order to provoke renewed debate, that whatever we own we actually owe to society and other human beings.
Speaker: Professor Arindam Chakrabarti received his BA and MA from Presidency College Kolkata, and his Doctorate in Philosophy from Oxford University in 1982. Since 1984, he has taught at University of Calcutta, The Asiatic Society Calcutta, University College London, University of Washington Seattle, University of Delhi, and at the University of Hawaii Manoa for 22 years. In 2018 he joined the Stony Brook New York Philosophy Department as the first occupant of Nirmal and Augustina Mattoo Chair of Indic Humanities. He published Denying Existence: on the logic of singular negative existential sentences, (Kluwer, Synthese Library, 1997), and has edited the Bloomsbury Research Handbook of Indian Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art. His second major book Realisms Interlinked: Objects, Subjects and Other Subjects will come out in September 2019. Apart from more than a hundred articles in refereed journals and anthologies, and six Bengali monographs on philosophy, he published the first Sanskrit book on modern Western theories of knowledge in 2005. His research and teaching have been in the areas of Comparative Philosophy of the Body, Epistemology, Metaphysics, and Philosophy of Mind.
This public lecture is organised by the School of Arts and Sciences, Ahmedabad University