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By |May 3rd, 2021|Books|0 Comments

Artificial Intelligence: Boon or Bane?

 A Social Science Perspective

This edited book aims to provide an overview of the main dimensions and challenges of artificial intelligence (hereafter AI) from a social science perspective.

The AI is the ability of a digital computer or computer-controlled robot to perform tasks that are commonly associated with intelligent beings. In a very short span from its introduction, AI has become omnipresent in contemporary human lives. Human being interacts with AI, whether knowingly or unknowingly, daily when using their phones, digital assistants, undergoing medical treatment, or during web browsing. AI has proven it can produce immense social good. However, every new technology comes with considerable caveats, there are always unforeseen consequences, which  we  tend  to  observe  once  set  in  motion.  Those  unintended  outcomes  of  AI will  likely challenge us all.

Although we are counting on AI as the next tool to revolutionize the way we live, work and interact with each other, it remains unclear as to how these intelligent agents will help to solve more complex problems than the ones existing today e.g. poverty, social inequality, human rights and social security, climate changes, pandemic crisis and so on. So, it becomes pertinent at current times that we see through social sciences perspective on AI to unpack and explain what AI means to be human.

In this background, this edited work is a novel attempt to ponder upon the social dimension of AI. Combining work from researchers active in different academic fields of social science, it will also include contributions from professionals and entrepreneurs who work with artificial intelligence. The book will be an edited volume in which the chapters are written by researchers, as well as experts, to understand the different aspects of AI in the broader societal context.

For more details on themes and submission process, see here:

 

Anthropological Explorations in East and South–East Asia

By |April 5th, 2021|Books|0 Comments

 

Book Description   

This volume  is a collection of eighteen ethnographic essays  on Anthropological Explorations in East and South–East Asia, reprinted from the almost forgotten Journal of the Anthropological Society of Bombay, published during 1886-1936. Divided into five parts,  it includes works on history, religion, tea cult, the Torii  of Japan and the Torans of India;  a  paper that deals with the veneration of  dead in China; eight papers on Tibet: on its customs, devil driving processions, book procession of Lamas, Tibetan folklore in eastern Himalayas, and the method of computing distance by means of tea-cups; a paper on Burma on the monastic institution and its Phongys;  and four papers on Malaysia dealing with the tiger in Malay folklore, folk medicine, etiological folktales, Burmese   and Indian folk beliefs about the man tiger and the Malay version of two ancient Indian apologues.The volume suggests that the history of anthropological writings in India is much older than is  believed  to be.  In addition, it also portrays glimpses of  non-tribal societies beyond India studied by indigenous scholars. This book should interest anthropologists, sociologists, Buddhists, and students of East and South-East Asia.

Revisiting Suicide:From a Socio-Psychological Lens

By |March 17th, 2021|Books|0 Comments

Book Description                                                

This book provides a socio-psychological enquiry of the phenomenon of suicide in the Indian context. It addresses the rising trend of suicides across the world and through case studies explores its primary reasons, the after-effects on survivors and families, and measures to prevent them. The volume focuses on deciphering the social and psychological meanings associated with suicide. Through an examination of psycho-social autopsies of numerous cases, it highlights the patterns and trends which emerge around mental well-being, suicide, and bereavement. It examines the primary roadblocks for robust suicide prevention measures and provides great insights into behavioural and personality categories and their relationship with suicide. Offering theoretical and empirical perspectives on the issue of suicide and self-harm, this book will be of interest to students, researchers, and faculty of behavioural sciences, psychology, social anthropology, demography, criminology, social work and sociology. It will also be an essential read for psychologists, counsellors, policy makers, NGOs, CSOs, legal experts and media personnel working in the area of suicide prevention and research.

 

Book Launch:Changing character of religiosity in Gujarat: Sacred Space,Time and Persona

By |February 5th, 2020|Books|0 Comments

 With the level of religiosity breaching the 90% mark as per the latest World Value Survey, India today is in the select club of highly religious nations. At this point of time, many scholars have warned about the dangers of religious illiteracy among staunch religious followers especially in multi-faith societies where misunderstanding and ignorance can escalate into hostility, abuse and violence, and hinder cooperative endeavours in all arenas of human experience.

This book studies the inextricable relation between religion and religiosity across space, time and persona. With these concerns, the authors emphasise empirical externalities of religion by observing the evolution of religious spaces and changing character of religious festivals over time. Findings from the empirical data justify the use of economic variables to understand religion and the changing demographics of religious pluralism. The analysis of religious and caste organizations throws light on how they have responded to the changing character of sacred time due to the economic shifts. In contrast to the ideas about spiritual gurus of old like hermits living in mountains, or bearded sages living in remote ashrams,  this book shows the role of technology- powered  godmen  and women, some of whom  have  become India’s most influential and powerful figures. No matter how deeply held our beliefs may be today about perpetuity of religion, they are likely in time to be transformed, or simply fade away.

The book raises many questions for social scientific research on religion. If religions have changed dramatically in the past, how might they change in the future? Is there any substance in the claim that belief in gods will die out altogether? As our civilisation and its technologies become increasingly complex, could entirely new forms of worship and celebration of festivals emerge?

This book should interest scholars of philosophy, theology, religions, and social sciences. Book detail

Book Launch Event at CCD on 09-09-2019

By |September 10th, 2019|Books|0 Comments

Lagacy of Ambedkar: Analysis and Appraisal

By |July 12th, 2019|Books|0 Comments

This collection of essays examines the legacy of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar with regard to his ideas of social democracy, eradication of caste system, formation and strengthening of constitutional institutions, and the role of religion and caste in a democracy. This volume is not a eulogy for Ambedkar, but an analytical attempt to look at his contributions and failures. The primary objective of the volume is to assess Ambedkar from a detached, unbiased and objective view in the light of changing contemporary India.

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ગુજરાતના શાળાકીય શિક્ષણનો એકસ રે

By |July 8th, 2019|Books|0 Comments

કેન્દ્ર સરકાર દ્વારા નવી શિક્ષણ નીતિનો ડ્રાફ્ટ પ્રસિદ્ધ કરવામાં આવ્યો છે તેવા સમયે આજે સેન્ટર ફોર કલ્ચર એન્ડ ડેવલપમેન્ટના જયેશ શાહ અને લેન્સી લોબો દ્વારા વધુ એક પુસ્તક "ગુજરાતના શાળાકીય શિક્ષણનો એક્સ રે" બુક સેલ્ફ (નવભારત સાહિત્ય મંદિર - મુંબઈ) દ્વારા પ્રસિદ્ધ થયું. સંશોધન અભ્યાસ આધારિત તારણો ઉપરથી આ પુસ્તકમાં અમે ગુજરાતમાં શાળાકીય શિક્ષણની ગુણવત્તા સુધારવા અંગે વ્યાપક ક્રાંતિકારી ભલામણો કરી છે અને તે આજના સમયની માંગ છે એવું અમારું સ્પષ્ટ માનવું છે. જે વ્યાપક ક્રાંતિકારી ભલામણો કરી છે તેમાં (01) “નો ડિટેન્શન” નીતિની પુનર્સમીક્ષા (02) લોકબોલીમાં ધોરણ એકથી ત્રણનો અભ્યાસક્રમ (03) ધોરણ આઠ પછી બોર્ડની પરીક્ષા (04) ધોરણ દસની બોર્ડની પરીક્ષા રદ કરવામાં આવે (05) શાળાના શિક્ષકોની ક્ષમતા વધારવા માટે તાલીમ અને તેની વ્યવસ્થા (06) વિદ્યાર્થીઓની ક્ષમતા વધારવા માટે મૂલ્યાંકન અને તેની વ્યવસ્થા (07) ઇન્ડિયન એજ્યુકેશન સર્વિસ (આઈઈએસ)ની અલગ કેડર ઊભી કરવી (08) વોકેશનલ શિક્ષણ અને વોકેશનલ સ્કૂલની સ્થાપના-નો સમાવેશ થાય છે.

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How People Vote? : Civic Literacy and Political Participation

By |May 4th, 2019|Books|0 Comments

How people vote in a liberal, open, competitive democracy is a big question in two senses. First, as Indian voters make up one-sixth of the world’s total electorate, their voting behavior considerably matters to the future of representative democracy everywhere. Second, as India faces so many challenges to its social, ideological and political cohesion, what people think about voting is significant to how India will evolve in the future. Political participation is central to the democratic system and civic literacy plays an instrumental role in it. This volume examines the impact of civic literacy on political participation, by studying voting behaviour in local, assembly and parliament elections in rural, semi-urban and urban areas of Gujarat.

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Marriage and Divorce: Changing Concepts and Practices

By |January 5th, 2019|Books|0 Comments

This volume explores the nature of social change in the fundamental institution of marriage in Indian society. It documents the churning going on in the conjugal bond with reference to gender inequality, patriarchy, domestic violence, divorce, separation, and remarriage under the impact of urbanization, modernization and globalization.The work includes fourteen papers divided into three parts. 

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