Why the middle class is apathetic to politics

Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad, professor of comparative religion and philosophy at Lancaster University, in Prospect magazine

“The political apathy of the middle class owes something to the differences in the way 21st-century India and 18th/19th-century western Europe developed. Whereas the growth of free-thinking western bourgeois culture preceded universal suffrage, Indian democracy is nearly half a century older than the birth of an economically vibrant middle class.

“So, whereas fighting for political power was a crucial element of early western bourgeois culture, in India political rights were taken for granted and are now neglected by those who see their prosperity as a result of their own economic wherewithal. Politics for the middle class is an intellectual preoccupation, not an urgent ethical imperative. Polls routinely show that compared to poorer sections of society, the middle class treats voting and other political activity as low priorities.”

Read the full article here: India’s middle class failure