In the Indian context there is a strong and overpowering imagination of the Knowledge Society full of technological promises popularised by our ex-president and conjurer of dreams – Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s writings and books. He has introduced the terms knowledge society / knowledge economy before in his 2020 vision of India becoming a developed nation, perhaps in 20-20 style. It is an imagination that is popular, if not populist, amongst the Indian middle classes and yet an imagination that is problematic if we were to look at the relations between knowledge and democracy. In 2009 Kalam’s latest book Aryabhatta’s Children. Why science will transform India in the 21st Century is slated for release. A particular genealogy of India’s scientific tradition is sought to be established from the ancient to the modern, with large losses of memory perhaps of the intervening years, that seeks to connect India’s genius and to position India in relation to the global knowledge society.
Are we Aryabhatta’s children? Reclaiming India’s innovative traditions
by C Shambu Prasad, KICS, 20 January, 2009