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The Elephant Paradigm

The Elephant Paradigm

Gurcharan Das
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Overview

The Elephant Paradigm: India Wrestles with Change is, quite simply, about an ancient civilization’s reawakening to the Spirit—and potential—of its youth. Following up on the success of India Unbound, which examined the process of India’s transformation in the 1990s from a closed to an open economy, The Elephant Paradigm ranges over a vast area—covering subjects as varied as panchayati raj, national competitiveness, and the sacred and philosophical concerns of the average Indian consequent to India’s entry into what the author calls the ‘age of liberation’. While India may never roar ahead like the Asian tigers, Das argues, it will advance like a wise elephant, moving steadily and surely, pausing occasionally to reflect on its past and to enjoy the journey.
Gurcharan Das employs the essay form to sew together varied facets of this remarkable transition. Divided into three sections, the book first establishes a context for the changes that have occurred, and then assesses how we have changed—or not changed—in our public and private lives. As he sweeps over the major political, social and economic developments, social and economic developments, he does not forget to examine the individual beliefs and aspirations that underpin the process. Crisp, insightful and witty, these essays capture both the disappointments and the joys that resulted from the ’90s revolution and serve as an essential guide to the new India.

Imprint: Penguin

Published: Nov/2002

ISBN: 9780143029106

Length : 320 Pages

The Elephant Paradigm

Gurcharan Das
Overview

The Elephant Paradigm: India Wrestles with Change is, quite simply, about an ancient civilization’s reawakening to the Spirit—and potential—of its youth. Following up on the success of India Unbound, which examined the process of India’s transformation in the 1990s from a closed to an open economy, The Elephant Paradigm ranges over a vast area—covering subjects as varied as panchayati raj, national competitiveness, and the sacred and philosophical concerns of the average Indian consequent to India’s entry into what the author calls the ‘age of liberation’. While India may never roar ahead like the Asian tigers, Das argues, it will advance like a wise elephant, moving steadily and surely, pausing occasionally to reflect on its past and to enjoy the journey.
Gurcharan Das employs the essay form to sew together varied facets of this remarkable transition. Divided into three sections, the book first establishes a context for the changes that have occurred, and then assesses how we have changed—or not changed—in our public and private lives. As he sweeps over the major political, social and economic developments, social and economic developments, he does not forget to examine the individual beliefs and aspirations that underpin the process. Crisp, insightful and witty, these essays capture both the disappointments and the joys that resulted from the ’90s revolution and serve as an essential guide to the new India.

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Gurcharan Das

Gurcharan Das is an author and public intellectual, best known for a much-acclaimed trilogy on the classical Indian goals of life. India Unbound is the first, on artha, or 'material well-being', which offers a personal account of India's recent social and economic rise; the second, The Difficulty of Being Good, on dharma, or 'moral well-being', illuminates our day-to-day moral dilemmas through a meditation on the epic Mahabharata; Kama: The Riddle of Desire, on the third goal, teaches us how to cherish desire in order to live a rich, flourishing life. He graduated in philosophy from Harvard University (Phi Beta Kappa) and later attended Harvard Business School, where he is featured in three case studies. He was CEO of Procter & Gamble India and managing director, Procter & Gamble Worldwide (strategic planning). At age fifty, he took early retirement to become a full-time writer. He writes a regular column for the Times of India and five Indian language papers, and contributes to the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal and Foreign Affairs. His other books include India Grows at Night: A Liberal Case for a Strong State, which was on the Financial Times' best books for 2013; a novel, A Fine Family; a book of essays, The Elephant Paradigm; and an anthology, Three Plays. He is editing a fifteen-volume history series for Penguin Random House, titled The Story of Indian Business. He lives in Delhi.

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