Audrey Truschke and the Blitzkrieg from the Hindu Right
The assault on Dr Audrey Truschke, associate professor in the Department of History at Rutgers University-Newark, has crossed all bounds of decency recently. It is now clear that the vicious campaign against her since 2018 has a lot more to do with her opposition to Hindutva ideology than about her scholarship or style. They bear all the hallmarks of similar attacks by the Hindu Right in recent years against intellectuals in India, some of whom have been shot dead in broad daylight and many more are in jail under trumped-up charges.
Fortunately, unlike in BJP-ruled India, academic freedom and the right to dissent are still alive in the United States. Rutgers University was quick to reiterate its support for Truschke, while also giving a patient hearing to Hindu student groups. Her colleagues as well as scholars from across the country have written in her support. Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Dalit and secular groups have united to stand in solidarity with her and they are continuing to organise international events in support of her.