Lectures organised coinciding with Martyrs Day at UoH

Dr. Mark LindleyDr. Mark Lindley, currently visiting the Centre for Gandhian Economic Thought, University of Hyderabad, delivered Distinguished Lecture on 30 January 2013 entitled, “Gandhi-Kumarappa Economics and 21st Century Ecological Concerns”.  As the nation observes martyrs day, it was befitting to recall his ideas in shaping new economic thinking.  Kumarappa had lasting engagement with Gandhian ideas to give them concrete form.  Dr. Lindley recalled that there has been a strong and dominating line of thinking in economics which lays great and over-riding emphasis on increasing production and consumption, irrespective of the existing levels of consumption.  This view of wealth of nations is short sighted, insensitive to concerns of the generations to come and oblivious to the state of the rest of nature.  It has brought about rapid depletion of non-renewable resources (called bucket economy by Kumarappa) and degradation of nature (over-burdening of sinks resulting in pollution, global warming and serious threat of climate change).  Gandhi had innate ecological concerns in his thinking.  Though ecological concerns did figure in works of some economists as subsidiary concerns, Kumarappa was the first economist to put ecological concerns right at the centre of his economics as such. He emphasized that building on Kumarappa’s work today has great promise for the future. It may be mentioned that J C Kumarappa passed away exactly 12 years after Mahatma Gandhi on 30 January 1960. Delivering a Public Lecture at Centre for Economics and Social Studies (CESS), Begumpet on 31 January 2013 titled “Challenges for Sustainable Development Today”, Dr. Lindley  questioned unqualified emphasis on economic growth and desire for greater and greater GDP – regardless of concerns for ecological consequences – as means of human happiness and welfare.  He asserted that ecological concerns are important in their own right.  It is also not clear that increased consumption inevitably leads to greater happiness.  Increasing production and consumption is justified only when these are at a low level. Where these are already at a high level, a reduction in consumption, rather than further growth will ensure same or higher happiness. Dr. Mark Lindley, born in Washington, DC in 1937, is both a noted musicologist and a historian of modern India, especially known for his scholarship on Gandhian ideas. After his studies at Harvard University (A.B.), Juilliard School of Music (M.S.) and Columbia University (D. Phil.), he has taught at various universities, including Columbia University, City University of New York, Washington University, University of London, Oxford University, University of Regensburg, Chinese University of Hong Kong, University of Kerala, Istanbul Technical University, Yildiz Technical University, Bogaziçi University, and Samskar Ashram Vidyalayam (Nizamabad, AP). He is widely travelled in India and the world lecturing in universities, colleges and schools. He has recently taught modern Indian history as a visiting professor at Bo?aziçi University in Istanbul, and is serving this winter as a visiting professor of Economics at Gujarat Vidyapeeth. He has published a great number of papers and over a dozen books on Gandhi, Kumarappa, modern Indian history, and musicology (he is regarded as an expert on the history of tempered tunings, of early keyboard fingerings).