Book Review Seminar on PLATO'S LABYRINTH (Routledge, 2017) by Aakash Singh Rathore, and RETHINKING INDIAN JURISPRUDENCE: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF LAW (Routledge, 2018) by Aakash Singh Rathore and Garima Goswamy.

About the Books: PLATO'S LABYRINTH: SOPHISTRIES, LIES AND CONSPIRACIES IN SOCRATIC DIALOGUES is an original and stimulating study of Plato's Socratic dialogues, which rereads and reinterprets Plato’s writings in terms of their dialogical or dramatic form. Taking inspiration from the techniques of Umberto Eco, Jacques Derridaand Leo Strauss, the book presents the Socratic dialogues as labyrinthine texts replete with sophistries and lies that mask behind them important philosophical and political conspiracies. Presenting innovative readings of major texts of Plato, this work is an ambitious attempt to synthesize philological, political, historical and philosophical research into a classical text-centered study that is at once of urgent contemporary relevance.   

RETHINKING INDIAN JURISPRUDENCE: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF LAW discusses the nature, source and purpose of law, and identifies those who are obliged to follow law and why. It differentiates laws from norms, codes of conduct and morality, and legal from moral obligation. It addresses these foundational questions about the law in general, and seeks to reorient our thoughts to the specific nature of law in India, the India of today, and the possible India of the future. The book covers relevant foundational elements, concepts and questions of the philosophy of law and brings the uniqueness of Indian philosophy of law to the fore. It examines legal debates on secularism, rationality, religion, rights and caste politics, andpresents useful cases and examples, including free speech, equality and reservation, queer law, rape and security, and the ethics of organ donation.

About the authors: Aakash Singh Rathoreis a professor of philosophy and author. He is currently Chief Editor, B. R. Ambedkar: The Quest for Justice (5 volumes) and International Fellow of the Center for Ethics and Global Politics, Rome, Italy. He has taught at Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Universities of Delhi, Toronto, Berlin, Rutgers, and Pennsylvania. He is Executive Editor of the journal Plurilogue and Director of the International Research Network for Religion and Democracy. He serves as Series Editor of Ethics, Human Rights and Global Political Thought (Routledge) as well as of Religion and Democracy: Reconceptualizing Religion, Culture, and Politics in Global Context (Oxford University Press). He has authored/coauthored about 13 books with major publishing houses, including the ones being reviewed.   

Garima Goswamy has taught Philosophy at Lady Shri Ram College, St Stephen's College, Laxmibai College and Hansraj College, University of Delhi, and at BML Munjal University, India. Currently she works in the risk-consulting industry.   

About the reviewers: Biraj Mehta Rathi is Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Wilson College, Mumbai. She has taught previously in the departments of Philosophy, and of Civics and Politics, University of Mumbai, and at the Sophia College for Women, Mumbai. She has been a resource person at various workshops, and has read papers in conferences and seminars, and published in prestigious academic journals on western philosophy and aesthetics. She initiated a certificate course on local culture and disability studies for the undergraduate students of Wilson College, and was a member of Modern Book Selection Committee and Mumbai Research Committee at the Asiatic Society of Mumbai. Currently she is pursuing post-doctoral research on the theme Martha Nussbaum's Cosmopolitanism: A Critique from the Indian Council of philosophical Research, Delhi and Department of Philosophy, University of Mumbai. Her areas of interest include Greek philosophy, sociopolitical philosophy, contemporary western philosophy (Continental philosophy), aesthetics and theories of human rights.  

Danish Hamid was trained as a Lawyer. He is currently a third year PhD candidate in political philosophy and the philosophy of law at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay. 

Event Date: 
Tuesday, 3 July 2018 - 3:00pm
Seminar Hall, Department of HSS
IIT Bombay, Powai, Mumbai