You are on page 1of 3

Integral Formation for Social Transformation Through Philosophy and Research Communication

Identity and Social Relations within the
Patterns of Democratic but Technocratic
Society is a significant theme from
onomic/ technological perspectives. The
concept of identity is both individual (self)
and collectively characterized, shared, and
constructed by social relations or
identifications. Thus can we speak of
individuality as identity? Or can we speak
of the collective cultural identifications as
identity? Are our identities in social
relations enabling or disenabling/falsely
constructed? Philosophers speak of this
problem as embodied vis--vis
disembodied and as Identity Syndrome.
There are vagaries of Identity and Social
Relations such as Self Identity,
Cognitive/Behavioral Identity, Racial
Caste, Gender, Religious Political,
Ideological Identity, Territorial, National
Linguistic, Identity, Professional Identity,
Discriminated, Enslaved Identity, Minority
Identity, Collective Community Identity,
Traditional, Modern, Technocratic Identity
all these construct identity claims and
identity formations. These vagaries are
termed as Politics of Identity by social
scientists and Identity Representations by
philosophers. Deep down these multiple
identities and representations posit
problems of Identity Crisis/Theft or False
Identifications. Critical thinkers critique
identity-constructions as interest-bound,
hence political and being political they
promote philosophies/practices of
domination and cultural manipulations as
against the ethics of promoting social

(New Delhi)

Integral Formation for Social Transformation Through Philosophy and Research Communication
Major Issues: (i) How identity and relations
are construed and perceived within
modern (Indian) democratic and
technological society? (ii) How can we
philosophically position these perspectives
of identity and relationality? The questions
of Identity and Relation as mutual categories
become the domain for exploration, and this
seminar is contextualized for the same.
There is a need to explore the diverse
possibilities of perceiving/positioning
Identity as in-differentia without losing
sight of the collectivity as against any
militantly sigularizations of identity and
The Deficiency of Modernist Democracy
What is deemed as representative democratic
politics (of that of modernism) seems not
sufficiently representative of the Indian
Cultural Plurality. Within Indian polity, there
seems to be both the rise and decline of the
individual and the collective. The majoritarian
representations turn out to be caste-cultural
politics misrepresentations, hence not-
sufficiently-democratic. There is a need to
explore the diverse possibilities of
perceiving/positioning Democracy as in-
differentia rather than defining identity and
Democracy away from rigid categories. As such
the paradigmatic shifts need to be theorized
and philosophically perceived as a departure
from the Euro-Centric
formulations (John Locke,
J.S. Mill, Bentham, Hobbes,
Rousseau etc) of democracy
towards culture-specific
identifications but without
losing sight of the
modernist frame of
enlightenment ethics.
From Democracy to Technocracy and
Technopoly: Issues
Technology increasingly
changes the face of
modernist democracy. It
does not seem to be
augmenting pragmatic
interests towards collective
social progress, development and
emancipatory involvements but implicit it
impels instrumental interests in favor of mere
consumerism and digital imperialism which
in turn project a new form of governance i.e.,
technocracy. While democracy is national,
technocracy is transnational in the sense of a
global political culture. It is a movement from
the reification of the material conditions
(modernist) towards the deification of the
technological conditions. The development of
European rationality pitched within the
structures of the knowledge such as
rationalism, Empiricism, Positivism, Scientism,
Economism and Technologism allied with
social/political structures Theocracy -
Aristocracy to Democracy, (now the most
modernist version is ) and Technocracy (the
rule of the Technologically powerful). All these
cumulatively propel a serious sense of erosion
of identity and relationality of that of the
vulnerable people. Both Beyond and Between
the borders of democratic claims and within
boundaries technological society, the question
Identity and Relations turn out to be all the
more techno-logical, technocratic and techno-
politicized. Technocracy as a form of
governance and technopoly as its cultural
politics is both a state of mind (ideological
colonialism) and culture today along with
untold forms caste/racial/religious identities.
However Traditional claims of identities and
relations and modern and technological
projections of identities are thus contested, re-
produced, subsumed but many times are
robbed (identity-theft).

Integral Formation for Social Transformation Through Philosophy and Research Communication
o Meta-narratives of Technological Society
o Theories of Technology on Identity Image
o Digital Society Identity Constructs
o Social Networking and Social Relations
o The Rule of the Technology Powerful vs.
Democracy towards identity and relations
o The Religion of Technology
o The Collective prison of Technology
o Can Technology reproduce the human
o Technologically controlled Identities, Hi-
Connect Identities,
o Bio Technological Human Identity etc.
o From Democracy to Technology: Demands
and Challenges towards Identity and
o Caste, Politics, Religion Consumerism,
(post) Colonialism on Identity and Social
o Relations, The politics of caste Identity
o Subaltern Identity: Dalit, Feminist, Tribal,
Indigenous Claims of Identity and Social
Relations. Nationalists Constructions,
Contested Democratic Space, Ideological
Colonial Identity Manifestations.
o Development Perspectives of Identity and
Social Relations - Social Movements and
Identity Concerns.
o Perspectives of Identity and Social
Relations in Literature & Linguistic Claims
on Dalit, Feminist and Colonial Identities.
Philosophy, Religion & Ethics Positions:
o Philosophical Markers of
o Is identity predicated /attributed?
o What do we mean when we refer to the
I? Is Me the I, and who is I of Me?
Is Me a bundle of the Sense or Mind
perceptions? Is it a matter of experience or
a physical state or a state of mind or
empirical or Trans-empirical?
o If Identity is bodily, what is the sense such
identifications? Is memory an identity? Is
identity no identity at all?
o What does it mean for an object to be the
same as itself? If an object or subject does
change can the object be identified with a
sense of enduring-self or permanency? Is
the object same or not-same, if so what is
its identity? Is my Identity the Other?
o Is the Otherness of the Other in me as My
o What is "personal identity"? What are
markers of identity? Is identity historical or
a cultural memory? Is identity relational
o What is Religious (Buddhism) Response to
Technological Social constructions of

Please contact
Dr. S. Lourdunathan
Head, Department of Philosophy
Arul Anandar College, Autonomous
Karumathur 625 514
Phone: 9566477696