His Life and Ideas

By K. Satchidananda Murty & Ashok Vohra

Subjects: India And South Asian Studies, Biography
Paperback : 9780791403440, 239 pages, September 1990
Hardcover : 9780791403433, 239 pages, September 1990

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Table of contents



I. Early Life


Madras Christian College
Professor Alfred Hogg
Influence on Radhakrishnan


II. Teacher at Madras and Rajahmundry


Teaching and Scholarly Work at Madras Presidency College
Gandhi-Radhakrishnan Encounter
Teaching at Rajahmundry and Publication of First Major Work


III. Professor at Mysore


Teaching at Mysore and Publication of Second Major Work


IV. From Mysore to Calcutta


Asutosh Mookerjee and the University of Calcutta
King George V Professorship
Invitation from Calcutta
Farewell to Mysore


V. Professor at Calcutta


Teaching and Further Study
The Magnum Opus Appears
Overcoming the Calumny


VI. Committee Work at Home and Lecturing Abroad


Involvement in Committees and Councils
Organizational Work
Goes West to Lecture


VII. Acclaim Within and Outside India, Knighthood


A Popular Lecture at Madras
Life and Work in India
England Invites Again
Hibbert Lectures and His Most Original Work
Other Lectures and Sermons in England
Nationalist Ideas and Their Impact
In Sri Lanka
Convocation Address: The Punjab Incident
Aids Journals
Andhra Mahasabha


VIII. Vice-Chancellorship at Andhra and Membership of League Committee


Andhra University and C. R. Reddy
Radhakrishnan Gets Involved
Radhakrishnan Becomes a Candidate for Vice-Chancellorship
Gets Elected
As Vice-Chancellor
Supports Freedom of Thought
Relations with Teachers
As Chairman
Vice-Chancellor - Teacher
Intoduces Intercaste Dining in Hostels
Medium of Instruction
Women, Extension Work, Sports
Maintains Properties
Other Preoccupations
Convocation Addresses
Public Homage to Gandhi
Eyes Without Sight, Brains Without Soul and Science Without Philosophy
League of Nations, The Committee on International Intellectual Cooperation
At Andhra University
Imports and Reads Communist Literature
Students' Union
Visits of National Leaders and Others
Malapalli (Harijan Hamlet)
Family Life
Contribution to University Development
Scholarly Work
Oxford Professorship Offered, Farewell to Andhra


IX. The Spalding Professorship


The Offer
Farewell at Madras, Important Speeches
Life and Work at Oxford
Another Major Work
Relations with Gandhi


X. Vice-Chancellorship at Banaras


Malaviya's Search for a Successor
Malaviya Succeeds
Election Process
Elected Vice-Chancellor of BHU
Work as Vice-Chancellor
Gaekwad Chair
Resigns George V Professorship
Life at Banaras
Silver Jubilee of BHU, Gandhi's Visit
University's Closure
Police Enter Campus
Efforts Make Police Quit
University Freed, Work Starts
Reelected Vice-Chancellor
Works as Vice-Chancellor
Elected Vice-Chancellor a Third Time
Freedom Comes
Malaviya's Demise
Tensions in the University
Demands Freedom for India After War
Visit to China
Gandhi Requests Advice


XI. Participation in Public Life and Making Higher Education Relevant


Preparation for Public Life
Entry into Public Life, Sapru Committee
Membership of the Constituent Assembly
Chairmanship of the University Education Commission


XII. Ambassador at Moscow and Professor at Oxford


Schilpp Volume


XIII. The Vice-Presidency


Chairmanship of Rajya Sabha
Expositions Abroad of Indian Thought, Policies, and Achievements
A Secret Trip
Foreign Tours
A Personal Loss
Towards a Second Term as Vice-President
Vice-President Again
Foreign Tours Again
Relations with President and Prime Minister
As Vice-President, An Assessment


XIV. The Presidency, Part I


As President
Relations with Nehru
The Sino-Indian Conflict
The Kamaraj Plan
Criticism of Government
Posthumous Tribute to Nehru


XV. The Presidency, Part II


Radhakrishnan-Shastri Relations
Advent of Indira Gandhi
Abroad as President
Sahitya Akademi and Shimla Institute
Honor from Pope
Hosting Foreign Statesman
Radhakrishnan-Mrs. Gandhi Relations
Critical Speeches
Last Years
Posthumous Tributes


XVI. Reflections on His Thought

XVII. Attempt at a Vignette




This book presents a critical and comprehensive biography of Radhakrishnan. The authors explain how Radhakrishnan, who had a British knighthood and an Oxford Professorship, and who did not participate in India's struggle for freedom, became important in the political life of Independent India. They show how this philosophy professor and vice chancellor often expressed radical views, developed rapport with national leaders, and became President of Indian under Nehru without losing the goodwill and regard of either the British intellectuals or the colonial government of India. It is the thought of Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan that is most often presented in the West as "Hinduism. " Through an analysis of his autobiographical sketches, writings of those who knew him and worked with him, and documents, the authors come to grips with Radhakrishnan's complex personality which, in spite of his greatness and varied achievements, is all too human.

K. Satchidananda Murty is Chairman of the Indian Philosophical Congress and Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies, Sarnath. The author of a number of books on Indian thought and culture, Murty is a "Padma Bhushan," the first recipient of the B. C. Roy National Award in Philosophy, an Honorary Professor of the People's University of China, Dr. Phil. h. c. of the Soviet Academy of Sciences. Ashok Vohra is Reader in Philosophy at Delhi University. He taught philosophy for over a decade at St. Stephen's, Delhi and was Director (Planning and Research) of the Indian Council of Philosophical Research.


"The authors have tapped a rich oral tradition to flesh out the rather meager autobiographical material on Radhakrishnan. Anecdotal, personal remembrances from those who knew him in various roles contribute significantly to the human portrait which emerges here. In addition, I appreciated the developed contextual element, which sets him not merely in places and times, but interactively with leading figures of his day. " — Hal W. French, University of South Carolina

"It is the first biography of Radhakrishnan that gives us some insight into the human side of the philosopher. " — Dr. Ishwar Harris, College of Wooster