Kautilya's Arthashastra and its Relevance for Contemporary South Asia
Kautilya's Arthashastra is a foundational text of Political Science, IR theory and Intelligence Studies. Political Science has only begun to address the idea-content of Kautilya's opus magnum. Kautilyan thought has influenced not only premodern and modern political thinkers and practitioners in South Asia, but also some modern Western social scientists like Max Weber and Hans J. Morgenthau. Moreover, there are indications of a transcultural 'migration' of Kautilyan thought-figures to political authors in pre-Islamic Persia, Arab-Muslim cultural space and Southern Europe. India is a singular case of the 'modernity of tradition' and the 're-use of the past' for addressing contemporary political challenges. Among its endogenous politico-cultural resources, Kautilya's Arthashastra takes an important position. The project explores the latent and manifest influence of Kautilyan thought in modern India's institutional practices and politico-strategic culture.