The Art and Science of Government

Date and Time

April 19, 2024

6:00 pm to 7:30 pm


Online via Zoom and CPR Conference Room

Suyash Rai

Deputy Director and Fellow, Carnegie India

Rahul Sagar

Global Network Associate Professor of Political Science, NYU Abu Dhabi

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The Centre for Policy Research invites you to a book discussion on:

The Art and Science of Government

Friday, 19th April 2024, 6:00 PM IST onwards

Rahul Sagar, Global Network Associate Professor of Political Science, NYU Abu Dhabi
Suyash Rai, Deputy Director and Fellow, Carnegie India

About the Book:

Hints on the Art and Science of Government was the first treatise on statecraft produced in modern India. It consists of lectures that Raja Sir T. Madhava Rao delivered in 1881 to Sayaji Rao Gaekwad III, the young Maharaja of Baroda. Universally considered the foremost Indian statesman of the nineteenth century, Madhava Rao had served as dewan (or prime minister) in the native states of Travancore, Indore and Baroda. Under his command, Travancore and Baroda came to be seen as ‘model states’, whose progress demonstrated that Indians were capable of governing well.

Rao’s lectures summarise the fundamental principles underlying his unprecedented success. He explains how and why a Maharaja ought to marry the classical Indian ideal of raj dharma, which enjoins rulers to govern dutifully, with the modern English ideal of limited sovereignty. This makes Hints an exceptionally important text: it shows how, outside the confines of British India, Indians consciously and creatively sought to revise and adapt ideals in the interests of progress.

This landmark edition contains both the newly rediscovered, original lecture manuscripts; and an authoritative introduction, outlining Rao’s remarkable career, his complicated relationship with Sayaji Rao III, and the reasons why his lectures have been neglected-until now.

About the Author:

Rahul Sagar is a Global Network Associate Professor of Political Science at NYU Abu Dhabi, where he teaches political theory and intellectual history. His research focuses on executive power. His first book Secrets and Leaks: The Dilemma of State Secrecy received the National Academy of Public Administration’s 2014 Louis Brownlow Award and the Society for the Policy Sciences’ 2015 Myres S. McDougal Prize.

Over the past decade he has built Ideas of India, a database that indexes more than 300,000 essays published in India between 1800-1950. A recent publication to emerge from this endeavor is To Raise a Fallen People, an anthology of 19th-century Indian political writings on the international order.