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Title: A critical investigation of the breadth of Mahatma Gandhi's religious pluralism through an examination of his engagements with atheists, Quakers and inter-religious marriage
Author: Jolly, Nicola Christine
ISNI:       0000 0004 2744 3661
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2013
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Mahatma Gandhi’s religious thought and pluralism have received attention from scholars and activists. This thesis provides an original contribution by addressing underexplored areas which reveal shifting boundaries in his pluralism. It explores Gandhi’s relationship with atheists, in particular his Indian friend Gora; the relationship between Quakers and Gandhi, in particular Marjorie Sykes and Horace Alexander; and Gandhi’s approach to inter-religious marriage in an Indian context, exploring both religious and societal dimensions. Throughout the thesis religious pluralism is addressed both in its philosophical or theoretical dimension and in the practical dimension of how one relates to people of other faiths. I provide a critique of the breadth of Gandhi’s pluralism in dealing with atheists in an inclusivist fashion and in his early opposition to inter-religious marriage. I also draw out its strengths in placing religious/ethical life above beliefs. This provides a framework for strong friendships with Quakers and atheists, and a positive approach to inter-religious marriage (in his later years) by allowing individual interpretations of religious life as opposed to community belonging. Gandhi’s theology and friendships offer a critique to theories of dialogue emphasising commitment to a particular tradition. They open a way to include marginalised groups in dialogue and respect the whole person rather than treating religion as a compartment of a person’s life.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BL Religion