Theorizing “cosmopolitan” support for indigenous people

R. Borde*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This article presents a nuanced analysis of the role of the international support for a social movement in India, which became known as the Niyamgiri Movement. It uses the theory of normative cosmopolitanism to conduct the analysis. The Niyamgiri Movement was aimed at preventing the mining of a mountain which an indigenous community believed was sacred. The article advances theoretical insights into normative cosmopolitanism, and it also contributes to previous research on the Niyamgiri Movement in India that has not examined the role of its international supporters in sufficient detail. In the article, postcolonial scholar Gayatri Spivak’s theories are used to qualify the analysis of the international support for the Niyamgiri Movement in terms of normative cosmopolitanism. The concept of soft power is also discussed as an alternative theoretical lens, which could also be used to interpret the role of the governmental actors that supported the Niyamgiri Movement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-455
JournalIndia Review
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2018

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