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Flügel, Peter (2021) 'Freedom or Salvation: Jaina Political Activism and Martyrdom under British Rule.' In: Flügel, Peter and Houtman, Gustaaf, (eds.), Asceticism and Power in South and Southeast Asia. London: Routledge. (Royal Asiatic Society Books) (Forthcoming)

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The participation of many Jainas in the Indian freedom struggle was only recently systematically documented. It was inspired by the example of “Mahātma” Gāndhī, who was able to mobilised mass protest against colonial rule under the banner of non-violence, or ahiṃsā, a value which the Jainas recognise as the core value of their own religion. At the hand of case-studies, the article explores the yet unstudied history and antinomies of a new Jaina concept of martyrdom (śahādat or balidāna) that emerged in the context of the Indian independence movement and was consolidated in post-colonial vernacular Jaina literature. The most significant sources are collective biographies compiled by Jaina authors in the manner of a new genre that was instigated on request of the Indian Ministry of Education and Youth Services and the Ministry of Home Affairs by P. N. Chopra’s Who’s Who of Indian Martyrs in the Gandhi Centenary Year. Jaina publications on this theme seem to have flourished particular during periods of heightened national self-consciousness, to evidence the patriotism of the Jaina community.

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: Jainism, Jains, Salvation, Freedom, Martyrdom, Memorials, Asceticism, Power, Religion, Politics, Society, South Asia, Gandhi, Quit India Movement, Violence, Voluntary Death, ahiṃsā, śahādat, balidāna
SOAS Departments & Centres: School Research Centres > Centre of Jaina Studies
Departments and Subunits > School of History, Religions & Philosophies > Department of Religions & Philosophies
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation
H Social Sciences
ISBN: 9780415423847
Date Deposited: 19 Sep 2018 08:42
Funders: Other

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