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Visva-Bharati: The Transnational Centre of Education

Available from: Springer Link

Book Title: Rabindranath Tagore: Adventure of Ideas and Innovative Practices in Education

Pages: 57-73

Asia, India, Rabindranath Tagore, South Asia

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Abstract/Notes: Tagore started a school in 1901 and in 1918 he wrote, ‘…the Santiniketan School should form a link between India and the world…the epoch of narrow nationalism is coming to an end…. The first flag of victory of Universal Man shall be planted there’. This was the beginning of Visva-Bharati that finally encapsulated the school and university with its many programmes and courses under one unique integrated system. The university was a logical progression in his philosophy of education. The central idea of the university was for the east to offer to the west the best of its wealth and take from the west its knowledge. This was indeed a novel idea as the country was yet to have its own full-fledged universities. Tagore envisioned the university as the seat for research that would generate and also dispense knowledge. Tagore established the university in Santiniketan where he had founded his school. He wanted the university to offer education that was enmeshed with the Indian way of life so that knowledge grew out of the culture, society, history, literature, geography, economy, science and flora and fauna of the country. From this sense of nationalism, we see Tagore evolving into an internationalist based on equal terms of fellowship and amity between the east and the west. He shared his quest for such a centre of learning with the ideas of several noted international pedagogues. Tagore saw world problems and national interests as interrelated, and he felt that internationalism was the inner spirit of the modern age.

Language: English

Published: Cham, Switzerland: Springer International Publishing, 2014

ISBN: 978-3-319-00837-0

Series: SpringerBriefs in Education


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The Idea of Viśva Bhāratī: Cosmopolitanism, Transculturality and Education in Early Twentieth Century South Asia

Available from: Taylor and Francis Online

Publication: South Asian History and Culture, vol. 12, no. 4

Pages: 436-444

Asia, India, Rabindranath Tagore - Biographic sources, South Asia, Viśva Bhāratī

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Abstract/Notes: In 1921, Rabindranath Tagore (1861–1941) inaugurated Viśva Bhāratī as an institution of higher learning, an ‘uttarbibhāga’, as has been observed, based on the foundations of the brahmacaryāśrama, i.e., ‘pūrvabibhāga’. This special article is a critical reflection on some aspects of this history. First, it strives to historically situate the development of Viśva Bhāratī against the backdrop of the cosmopolitan transcultural entanglements of contemporaneous Indian intellectual life. Second, it endeavours to signpost some key strands of contemporaneous educational philosophy and their broader exigencies. In doing so, it neither claims to provide a definitive history of this institution based extensively on original research nor does it mean to narrate in any triumphalist tone its century-long journey. This then is a commemoration of the institution at its centenary by way of a critical reappraisal of the world of ideas from which it emerged and with focus on some of its early defining moments.

Language: English

DOI: 10.1080/19472498.2021.1981673

ISSN: 1947-2498

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