Chapter

Nehru and Socialism

B. R. Nanda

in Jawaharlal Nehru

Published in print October 1998 | ISBN: 9780195645866
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081363 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195645866.003.0009
Nehru and Socialism

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Jawaharlal Nehru was an avowed supporter of socialism. In his presidential address to the Lahore Congress in December 1929, Nehru affirmed that he was ‘a socialist and republican…’, making him the enfant terrible of Indian politics. His interest in Marxism and planned economic development was stirred by the Brussels Congress and his four-day visit to Moscow in 1927. In 1933, Nehru wrote a series of articles entitled ‘Whither India?’, in which he explained why he believed in socialism and argued that capitalism had outlived its day. The crisis of 1936 had a profound impact upon Nehru; he decided to subordinate ideological considerations to his overriding loyalty to Mahatma Gandhi’s leadership and to the Congress party as the chief instrument of the anti-imperalist struggle. In truth, Nehru could not easily give up any of the three basic tenets of his political creed—secularism, democracy, and socialism.

Keywords: Jawaharlal Nehru; secularism; democracy; socialism; capitalism; politics; India; Marxism; economic development; Congress

Chapter.  3567 words. 

Subjects: Indian Politics

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