Socio-cultural Ethics: Indian Philosophical Perspective

By Indira Y. Junghare.

Published by The International Journal of Diverse Identities

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Throughout history, systems of ethics, which are part of both secular and religious philosophies, have been misunderstood as religious ideologies. There are several reasons for such misunderstanding: confusion between the concepts of morality and ethics, insufficient knowledge of the history of traditions, and linguistic and cultural evolution. This paper will examine India’s philosophies and analyze some of the principles of socio-cultural ethics, which are basic to societal organization, families and individual lives. The paper will focus on the usefulness of those ethical principles for resolving the 21st century problems caused by diversity arising from globalization, Westernization, and modernity.

Keywords: ethics, morality, philosophy, religion, societal, cultural, tradition, modernity, diversity, globalization, India

International Journal of Diverse Identities, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp.37-49. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 717.841KB).

Dr. Indira Y. Junghare

Professor, South Asian Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, Institute of Linguistics, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA

Professor of Linguistics and South Asian Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at the University of Minnesota. Her teaching & research fields include sociolinguistics (bilingualism, language and identity, language and society, language and communication), South Asian linguistics (Marathi, Hindi, Pali & Sanskrit), Indian literature (classical and modern), and philosophies and religions (Hinduism & Buddhism). She is author of Topics in Pali Phonology, Marathi Tadbhava Phonology, and The Poetry Pond; and translator of Phanishvar Nath Renu’s Hindi novel: Maila Anchal ‘The Soiled Border,’ Subhadra Kumari Chauhan’s Hindi short stories-collection: Bikhare Moti ‘Scattered Pearls,’ and S. N. Navre’s Marathi play: Sur Rahu De ‘Let the Tune Go On.’ She has published numerous articles in sociolinguistics, linguistics, literature, philosophy, and religions of India. She is a recipient of numerous awards: CLA Distinguished Teacher, Outstanding Faculty, Gordon L. Starr Award, University of Minnesota Outstanding Community Service Award, and Asian-Pacific Minnesotans—Leadership Award. She served on the Fulbright Scholarship Awards for India Studies from 2002-2004. She served as chair of the Department of South Asian Languages and Cultures (1991-2000), and director of its graduate and undergraduate programs (1994-2000). She ran the South Asian Languages and Cultures journal (Mahfil) from 1994-2002. She led the establishment of the Institute of Linguistics, Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures (ILASLL) in 1991, the Department of Asian Languages and Literatures (ALL) in 2000, and the India Center in 2007. At the present time, she is working on the development of Diversity-Ethics-Peace Studies as an academic discipline, which has received the 2006 Tony Diggs award for Innovation.