Gandhi on race, sex, and pluralism

Gandhi Is Deeply Revered, But His Attitudes On Race And Sex Are Under Scrutiny


In 1903, when Gandhi was in South Africa, he wrote that white people there should be "the predominating race." He also said black people "are troublesome, very dirty and live like animals." ...

In his late 70s, before he died at 78, he slept naked with his grandniece when she was in her late teens. He said he wanted to test his willpower to abstain from sex. Nowadays, most people would call that abuse. Some question whether the young female was capable of giving consent as a minor to a man who was so revered and so much more powerful than she. ...

The man who assassinated Gandhi, Nathuram Godse, was a follower of Hindutva — Hindu nationalism. Godse wanted India to be a Hindu country and objected to Gandhi's vision of India as a secular, pluralistic democracy. (India is about 80% Hindu but also has one of the world's largest Muslim populations, making up about 14% of the country, or around 180 million people.) "The Hindutva type of ideology considered [Gandhi] to be an enemy because he was talking of secularism and not of Hinduism," says Yogesh Kamdar, honorary secretary of the Mani Bhavan museum and the son of Indian freedom fighters.
Comment: Good read

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