Audio and transcript from the Shorenstein APARC colloquium, "Eight Threats to Freedom of Expression in India," on April 5, 2017, with Ramachandra Guha.
India prides itself on being the "world's largest democracy." In some respects it is certifiably democratic; as in the regular conduct of free and fair elections. But in other respects there are deficits. One such area is freedom of expression. While Indian writers, artists and film-makers are certainly freer than their counterparts in totalitarian countries such as China, they are less free when compared to their colleagues in democracies such as Sweden or the United States. This lecture identifies eight distinct threats to freedom of expression in India, the most important of which are the presence of archaic colonial laws and the rise of identity politics.