By Ramesh Thakur
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From the Hardcover edition.
Kirkus Prize Nominee for Nonfiction (2014)
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Extra info for Ayodhya and the Politics of India's Secularism
As Leader of the Opposition from 1975 to 1979, Thatcher was above all a public politician, struggling to impose her authority on a fractious party and to articulate a new vision of Conservative politics. For a constituency to whom the internal workings of politics are invisible, rhetoric forms the principal medium by which parties take on a wider public identity; and in this sense, as Philip Williamson has written, ‘politicians are what they speak and publish’. Yet rhetoric is not simply a vehicle through which reality is mediated.
Andrew Gamble reconstructs Thatcherite perceptions of Europe and America during the 1970s and 1980s, culminating in the neo-Thatcherite orthodoxy of the 1990s: that a clear choice had to be made between closer integration with Europe and stronger relations with the United States. Stephen Howe takes up the question of empire, which sits alongside Europe and the United States as one of the three referents that have historically shaped Britain’s role in the world. 125 on Mon Dec 24 08:07:11 WET 2012.
1 In ofice, appeals to the ‘seventies crisis’ proved a powerful rhetorical device, framing the actions of the Thatcher governments against a gallery of apocalyptic alternatives. 2 Yet Thatcher did not simply exploit a sense of crisis; she offered a speciic interpretation of the seventies that privileged particular responses. As Colin Hay has argued, crises ‘are above all public constructions’, which ‘need bear no direct correspondence with the symptoms they narrate’. 3 The diagnosis offered by the Thatcherites was far from the only reading in play, even within the Conservative Party.
Ayodhya and the Politics of India's Secularism by Ramesh Thakur