Discussing the theory of Modernity outside the West, speakers will include Arjun Appadurai, Partha Chatterjee, Sudipta Kaviraj, Steven Lukes, Sheldon Pollock, Sanjay Subrahmanyam, and David Washbrook.
Scholarly opinion remains split on the history of modernity in a global perspective. Older models of a singular transformation with its origins in western Europe and then disseminated across the world have been complicated by evidence of multiple or alternative modernities in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Postcolonial critique in South Asia in particular has sought to rethink the centrality of colonialism in this history, whereas contrarily contemporary globalization processes have rekindled the question of convergence as posed in earlier modernization theory. How and why "premodernity" ended, whether there is an "early modern period," what colonialism meant for modernity remain thorny and consequential issues.