Philosophy professor Sundar Sarakkai to give talk at York

Why are intellectual traditions from other cultures not part of mainstream academic disciplines?

Sundar Sarukkai
Sundar Sarukkai

This question is the focus of Sundar Sarukkai’s Nov. 7 talk at York U, “Science, Philosophy and non-Western Traditions of Knowledge”, an event hosted by the York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR).

Indian philosophical traditions, for example, are never taught as mainstream philosophy in the way that Greek traditions are, although there are common philosophical themes in both. Traditions of aesthetics from India (and other Asian countries) are still not part of regular syllabi for students in the west.

If we do not impute motives to this exclusion, says Sarukkai, then we need to ask why it is so difficult to incorporate insights from other cultures into the university curricula in Canada and elsewhere.

Sarukkai, professor of philosophy at the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bangalore, was the founder-director of the Manipal Centre for Philosophy and Humanities, Manipal University from 2010 to 2015.

He is the author of the following books: Translating the World: Science and LanguagePhilosophy of SymmetryIndian Philosophy and Philosophy of Science, What is Science? and The Cracked Mirror: An Indian Debate on Experience and Theory (co-authored with Gopal Guru).

The talk will be held in Room 626 on the sixth floor of the Kaneff Tower from 11am to 1pm.

Sarukkai will be in Toronto to participate in the “Found in Translation: Cosmopolitics and The Value of Biotech” workshop at York University on Nov. 3 to 6.

Organized by Anna Agathangelou (political science) and Bernard Lightman (humanities), this workshop explores the nature of profound biotech change at the fundamental level of constitutional rights and the political structures of individuals and collectives.

The workshop’s plenary speaker is Sheila Jasanoff, Pforzheimer professor of science and technology studies director, Program on Science, Technology and Society at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. Her talk will be held on Nov. 3 at 5:30pm in the Executive Dining Room, Schulich School of Business.

The workshop and Sarukaai’s visit are sponsored by: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Office of the Vice-President Academic & Provost, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, York Centre for Asian Research, Office of the Vice-President Research & Innovation, Department of Political Science, Faculty of Graduate Studies, Department of Social Science, and the Centre for Feminist Research.