In this conversation, The Polis Project’s Suchitra Vijayan and Vasundhara Sirnate, discuss Prof. Ravinder Kaur’s new book Brand New Nation: Capitalist Dreams and Nationalist Designs in Twenty-First-Century India. Prof Kaur walks us through the transformation of the Indian nation-state into a neoliberal business enterprise and theorizes the process of branding the nation-state through a rich visual archive of posters and advertising material. She articulates the connection between those early years of “India rising” rhetoric and aggressive push for globalization is largely responsible for the emergence of authoritarian populism under Modi. We explore the unintended political consequences of the corporatization of the State, what this means for the future.
Prof. Kaur is an Associate Professor of Modern South Asian Studies at the University of Copenhagen. She is the author of Since 1947: Partition Narratives among the Punjabi Migrants of Delhi.