By Pankaj Mishra
The Clash Within: Democracy, Religious Violence, and India's Future
by Martha C. Nussbaum
Last summer Foreign Affairs, Time, Newsweek, and The Economist highlighted a major shift in American perceptions of India when, in cover stories that appeared almost simultaneously, they described the country as a rising economic power and a likely 'strategic ally' of the United States. In 1991, India partly opened its protectionist economy to foreign trade and investment. Since then agriculture, which employs more than 60 percent of the country's population, has stagnated, but the services sector has grown as corporate demand has increased in Europe and America for India's software engineers and English-speaking back-office workers. In 2006, India's economy grew at a remarkable 9.2 percent.