Einstein beyond Science

— Hem Raj Kafle
Let every man be respected as an individual and no man idolized.
(Albert Einstein)
Almost every educated human being around the world knows Albert Einstein as a great scientist, with allusion to his path-breaking formula e=mc2.  But what about his philosophical orientations outside physics and mathematics? This article presents a reading of some of his opinions beyond the scope of fundamental sciences. 
A remarkable aspect of Einstein’s idea about science lies in how he defines the identity and role of a scientist in relation with other identities and roles. Unlike most of us who see science in hard work within a specific circle, and worse, in the crafty maneuvering of data through modern gadgets, Einstein takes a scientist for a “real seeker after truth” perhaps identical to a sage in penance and distinguished from “a mere artisan or a specialist.” For him, a scientist’s identity is best characterized by his “knowledge of the historic and philosophical background” of the subject of his pursuit. Thus, a scientist is expected to grow to be a philosopher developing the competent vision as much to internalize and communicate the results of his hard works and to challenge and appreciate existing knowledge, as to signal the avenues for future adventures.  The scientist is also a historian for his careful documentation of the erstwhile achievements and failures in a field of knowledge. A physicist, for this reason, has no need to wait till a philosopher does “critical contemplation of the theoretical foundations”; it is his own responsibility to be able to document, assess and disseminate the vital (and sometimes dangerous) aspects of his discoveries because “he himself knows best, and feels more surely where the shoe pinches.”  
A large part of Einstein’s discourse on science involves his ideas on the responsibilities of a scientist. His primary emphasis in this direction is on the scientist’s public role, which fundamentally includes critical awareness towards possible misuses of scientific knowledge, especially during violence and war. He explains, “When men are engaged in war and conquest, the tools of science become as dangerous as a razor in the hands of a child. The fate of mankind depends entirely on our sense of morality.” This reflects a general condition of a time during the twentieth century when Einstein, earlier as a member of the League of Nations in the aftermath of World War I, and later as a witness to the nuclear devastations of World War II, advocated the need of a world government, and of disarming warring countries towards ensuring peace and harmony in the world as a whole. So, he foresees the intensity of the dangers of nuclear warfare in forthcoming periods of human history, and stresses the urgency of ethically reorienting scientists and engineers towards general human welfare. He terms such reorientation as “a particularly heavy burden of moral responsibility” rooted in the fact that “the development of military means of mass destruction is dependent on their work.”
Often great people are believed to be associated with a political philosophy. Sometimes they themselves appear to claim a particular association.  But mostly, they maintain a universal balance in their lives and works. And, it is common for their public image to come under the scrutiny of the press and general people. Einstein’s involvement in disarmament movement on behalf of the League of Nations during the 1920s gave his relatively neutral, apolitical stance a semblance of political identity.  But in his thoughts he reserves himself a nonaligned position. He idealizes democracy as a system to guarantee human rights and dignity. He declares: “My political ideal is democracy.” And he deplores autocracy thus: “An autocratic system of coercion … soon degenerates. For force always attracts men of low morality, and I believe it to be an invariable rule that tyrants of genius are succeeded by scoundrels.”
Of Einstein’s thoughts on universal human identity and co-existence, the notion of cosmic religion appears to be the most representative.  In his seminal work “Religion and Science” Einstein defines cosmic religion as “a third stage of religious experience,” which belongs to or represents all other religions, “even though it is rarely found in a pure form… .”  For him the first and second stages are “religion of fear” and “moral religion,” in which the images of diverse individual Gods were inherent. He asserts that such diversity stems from the generally perceived plurality of races, locations, rituals and beliefs, and involves the state of obligation to, or rather oppression by, an omnipotent yet inherently emaciated power. It further signifies a general moral dilemma of whether to worship individuality or idolatry. 
The notion of cosmic religion transcends any barriers created by multiple religious sects, leaders and preachers. In other words, it foresees the end of divisions, or at least the reduction of their recurrence. There is a rare emergence of a representative, unifying religious leadership from within the existing multiplicity. So, Einstein argues, such emergence as that of Moses or Buddha has been distinguished by cosmic religious feeling, “which knows no dogma and no God conceived in man’s image.” Cosmic awareness both indicates unity in diversity, and shows the absence of diversity. Imbued with cosmic religious orientation, an individual would feel the “futility of human desires and aims,” meaning that cosmic awareness would make individuality appear like moral imprisonment subsequently impelling a person to accept the world as “a single significant whole.” Interestingly, Einstein appears to reflect Rabindranath Tagore’s notion of a world devoid of “narrow domestic walls.” Thus,  in faith and pursuit of cosmic religion, Einstein believes, an individual “achieves a far-reaching emancipation from the shackles of personal hopes and desires.” 
But does Einstein mean to be an atheist? Alan H. Batten puts that though his ideas reflect some sense of atheism, it is only the “condemnation of anthropomorphic images of God.” Cosmic religion underscores the call for glorifying the concept of godhood and religion as greater and more inclusive than what is generally believed and practiced in everyday life. The cosmic sense — the emphasis on the convergence of individualities into one encompassing principle, the concerns for universal brotherhood and harmony — makes Einstein a true preacher of humanity. This is the aspect many educated people and scientists alike may not know about Albert Einstein. It takes more reading on/of his ideas to realize that the great scientist was much greater and more polysemic than his scientific works.
Works Consulted
  • Batten, Alan H. “Subtle are Einstein’s thoughts.” 26  Sep.  2005.  3 Oct. 2007<http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/print/23008>.   
  • Einstein, Albert.  Ideas and Opinions. Trans. Walter E. Delhi: Rupa, 2003.
  • Heckman, Jessica. “Action at a Distance: Einstein as Activist.” Vassar College Libraries, Archives and     Special Collections. 3 June 2011 <http://specialcollections.vassar.edu/exhibits/einstein/essay3.html>
  •  Kafle, Hem R.“Cosmic Awareness in Laxmi Prashad Devkota.”Devkota Studies 3.2(2008):27-31.
  •  Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.“Albert Einstein, Philosophy of Science.” 11 Feb. 2004. 3 June2011 <http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/einstein-philscience/>

Neither the Second God Nor the Message

— Nirmala Mani Adhikary
Ask someone raised in the religious traditions of the Western world to describe God, and this, with idiosyncratic variations, might be the answer:
“God is all-knowing, and all powerful. He is a spirit, not a body, and He exists both outside us and within us. God is always with us, because He is everywhere. We can never fully understand Him, because He works in mysterious ways.”In broad terms, this describes the God of our fathers, but it also describes the electronic media, the second god, which man has created.
Tony Schwartz (Media: The Second God, 1983, p. 1)
We live in mediated world. Mass media play a significant role in present society. However, understanding this significant entity is not easy. The term “mass media” encompasses a countless array of institutions and individuals who differ in purpose, scope, method, and cultural context. It may refer to the people, the policies, the organizations, and the technology that go into producing mass communication. Sometimes, the term is used just to mean various artifactual and/or mechanical means, such as books, newspapers, magazines, radio, television, film and the Internet, emphasizing the single components of the mass media. Often, the term refers to the media industry, also called the content industry. Mass media in general have complex relationship with various aspects of society such as cultures, ideologies, political systems, economic systems, technologies available, and so on
Controversies exist in the field of mass communication and media studies as in many other areas of academic fields/disciplines. There are differing ideas among scholars about understanding communication, its process and medium. Mediated communication is not an exception. Over the years, different theories have risen and then faded into the background and other theories and methods of studying mass communication have gained attention. Some theorists even argue that the mass media actually are declining and heading towards their demise. But other theorists argue that, despite the changing technology, the phenomenon persists within the whole institutional framework.
Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980), the “archpriest” of media analysis, argues that medium is the message. “What is most important are the media people watch or listen to, not the programs or texts carried by the media”, he opines. And, Tony Schwartz terms electronic media as “the second god.” However, this is to note that electronic media are experienced differently in societies with ‘non-Western’ characteristics. The dissimilarities are not just a matter of difference in economic development, since profound differences of culture and long historical occurrence are involved. The study of mass communication media cannot avoid dealing with questions of world-views and values and norms.
In one of the traditional thoughts in Hinduism, communication is the sharing among/ between sahridayas. Communication according to this concept is a relationship based on common and mutual understanding and feeling, for sahridaya literally means ‘of one heart’. Here, communication is for communion. Thus, communication is an inward search for meaning, a process leading to self-awareness, then to freedom, and finally to truth. The intra-personal dimension is of greater importance than the interpersonal (and other forms like mass communication) in the Vedic Hindu approach.  
According to the orthodox Hindu belief, the body is only a temporary abode of atman, and it is an instrument for the attainment of moksha. The bodily self is not the ultimate truth though it is essential for the worldly existence. In fact, all worldly things are considered ephemeral, and the mundane world is just a transition on the way to the spiritual one. Understandably, medium or channel could be a constituent of a process of attaining mutual understanding, commonness or oneness among people: no more, no less.
When the place of medium or channel is considered in the light of Hindu world-view, it is a means, not the end. Certainly, the channel/medium is vital, but not more than the humans and the messages involved in the communication process and the ‘communication goal’ itself. Thus, the notions – medium as the message and media as the second god – do not seem in consonance to Hindu world-view. However, they may influence human conditions, and may even force to bring changes into human environments.
Present day mediated world is indeed a two-edged sword. Media are setting up new exchange systems, completely changing the conditions governing the transmission of knowledge, opening up a whole range of possibilities for making formal and non-formal education generally available, bringing culture to the people at large, and promoting knowledge and know-how. They are creating conditions that allow constant individual enrichment and enable the people of all nations to take part in their own advancement and to broaden their outlooks. At the same time, the ‘disembodiment’ or ‘de-personalization’ that McLuhan warned about just a few decades ago has, seemingly, become widespread. Some say that media have made us more violent and weakened our moral character. However, this issue needs more extended discourse than is intended here.
In brief, the mass media have both positive and negative dimensions. If we consider media as the second god or the message itself, we cannot be intelligent consumers of media. Rather, such notion promotes the idea of passive, tame and helpless receiver once claimed by the hypodermic needle theorists. But, the situation alters when we understand mass media just a means for our ‘communication goals’. The sadharanikaran model of communication (SMC), which underscores the notion of sahridayata as fundamental to profound understanding and warm co-existence among people, can substantially contribute in this regard.
For more discussion on the SMC, please visit:

Effects of Gasoline Adulteration

Bibek Baral
Performance and emissions of internal combustion engines are sensitive to the fuel used as they are designed to run on fuels with certain specifications. When an engine is run on a fuel with altered specifications, the performance and emissions of the engine may deteriorate and the durability and reliability of the engine components may be affected. Fuel adulteration is often a surreptitious operation in which a higher priced fuel, such as gasoline, is mixed with other cheaply available hydrocarbon fuels or solvents. This changes the composition and physical properties of the base fuel, and use of such fuels often results in reduced drivability of vehicles and increased tailpipe emissions. This problem is pervasive throughout South Asia and has also been reported in Greece, Brazil and African countries.
The basic reason for fuel adulteration is the financial benefit obtained from differential taxes imposed on different fuels. In many developing countries including Nepal gasoline is more expensive than diesel and kerosene because gasoline is taxed while diesel and kerosene are subsidised. Kerosene is used by moderate to low income people for cooking and lighting purposes and so, after subsidy, it is significantly cheaper compared with gasoline. The price difference between these two fuels is the main reason behind one of the most common forms of fuel adulteration, i.e. blending kerosene with gasoline. The other factor for this type of adulteration is the easy availability. Other types of gasoline adulteration prevalent in Nepal include mixing of gasoline with gasoline boiling range industrial solvents such as toluene, xylene and other aromatics, or light hydrocarbons such as pentanes and hexanes (rubber solution) which carry insignificant tax. Diesel adulteration, which includes mixture of kerosene and used lubricants with diesel is also equally ubiquitous. However, gasoline-kerosene adulteration would be more harmful in terms of emissions and damage caused to the spark ignition (SI) engines than the diesel adulteration would do to compression ignition (CI) engines and its emissions. Fuel adulteration is usually done by the operators of ‘for hire’ vehicles who do not own the vehicles, and, according to media reports, also by some of the public distribution system operators, and the fuel transporters.
Blending kerosene with gasoline will primarily result in a fuel with heavier hydrocarbon components contributed by the kerosene and thus a fuel with reduced volatility. It particularly elevates the middle and final evaporation temperatures by the introduction of heavier hydrocarbons in the kerosene. On the other hand, mixing small amounts of hydrocarbon solvents such as toluene and xylene with gasoline would not significantly affect the evaporation characteristics of the gasoline, because of the fact that they have boiling points in the range similar to gasoline components and some even occur in gasoline itself. However, these solvents do spike the fuel with an excessive amount of certain types of hydrocarbons. Both of these factors, i.e., change in gasoline volatility as well as the increase in certain class of hydrocarbon component, especially aromatic hydrocarbon, play key roles in the emission of spark ignition (SI) engines (gasoline type engines). It has been established from various studies that increase in molecular weight of the fuel, and hence decrease in volatility of the fuel, increases total hydrocarbons (THC), and particulate matter (PM) emissions from spark-ignition engines. Besides, increases in certain classes of hydrocarbon in the fuel have been found to be associated with an increase in THC and PM emissions as well as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH). These emissions, as shown by epidemiological studies, pose serious risk to public health and the environment. Some hydrocarbons, especially PAH, particularly are known carcinogens. Results from a series of experimental studies conducted by the author concluded that an adulterated blend containing 20% of kerosene produces 2 to 3 folds more THC, PM and PAH emission. The results are really alarming and if immediate action is not taken against the clandestine fuel adulteration operation, the general public will be exposed to a lot higher levels of such harmful pollutants. Situation is getting even worse by ever increasing number of vehicles in Kathmandu Valley and gasoline paucity which is promoting increased tendency of its adulteration by kerosene.
In addition to the emissions, the gasoline adulterated with kerosene would make the fuel more susceptible to knock, an abnormal combustion phenomenon in spark ignition engines. When knock is severe and persistent, it may damage the engine components including piston rings and lands, cylinder head gasket, and piston crown. Experimental studies showed that at certain engine condition when the engine fuelled with gasoline operates without knocking, a 10 percent kerosene blend would cause more than fifty percent of engine cycles knocking, and a 20 percent kerosene blend would cause almost all of the engine cycles knocking. Also at certain engine operating condition, the knock intensity resulting from 20 percent blend is more than 5 times greater than 10 percent kerosene blend whereas with 100 percent gasoline the knock intensity is zero. This indicates that prolonged running with adulterated fuel will seriously damage the engines.
The consequences of fuel adulteration range from environmental to economic. The increased emissions resulting from the use of the adulterated fuel has a direct environmental consequence. However, there may be indirect consequences as well. Kerosene, which is the basic fuel for cooking and lighting intended for lower income people, is misused in the transport sector, thus depriving those people of their daily cooking and lighting fuel. This may compel people to use inefficient biomass stoves as an alternative causing higher level indoor pollution. The economic consequence of fuel adulteration is the loss in tax due to the large scale channelling of subsidised kerosene to the transport sector. As adulterated fuel may affect the durability of engine components, for example, due to knock, prompting the engine components to be replaced earlier than their usual operating life, this is also an economic loss.
To conclude, adulterated gasoline which has adverse consequences on environment and economy has to be limited by any means. For this, the government agencies including the Ministry of Supplies, the state-owned Nepal Oil Corporation and Nepal Bureau of Standards should consider the matter more seriously and come up with proper strategy to deal with the furtive fuel adulteration practices. The consumers should also be careful and choose more reliable fuel supplier. After all, it comes to their own well-being. 

Reflective Journaling: An Autoethnographic Experience

Kashiraj Pandey
Reflective writing, or what I rather call journaling, empowers us to creatively and expressively portray who we are and what we experience. By challenging ourselves to be honest and to put our voices on paper, we cannot help but disrupt old patterns and beliefs. Anybody who may be present or absent in any given context is creative and it is all about whether or not we document our creativity that comes as a product of the interaction with the world around us which readily boosts confidence and cross cultural understanding for our overall transformation.
To me writing works as craft while not worrying on the meaning as we prefer to leave readers to make their own meanings that anyway keep changing according to social-temporal contexts. As response to our regular teaching learning activities, the teachers of English at the Department of Languages and Mass Communication are regularizing the practice of journaling with students since 2005. As a teacher and also the reflective practitioner, I always step into each classroom once a week, divide students into groups, facilitate the class while students in turn discuss the subject matter. With my frequent moderation and facilitation, I could see that more learning is taking place than just my teaching. According to the individual understanding, all students reflect through writing in journal, the outcome.
Maintaining a journal has helped us realize creativity as a plant growing in newer and more beautiful interweave every day making ourselves fresh and new. Thinking many might fail to do so not getting conducive environment, we encourage the students to explore their creativity that was seen in different levels in and outside the classroom. Based in our experience at Kathmandu University, as we start the semester with a set of instructions about using journals in the classroom, as Young (1999) suggests “that journals are valuable not just busy work, they are used daily as students and teacher build the knowledge of course” (p. 18), I like to propose some steps as guidelines in the beginning of each semester-group students. 

First, to ask students buy a No. 3 Register. Secondly, to make them clear on the language of the journal, in our case it should be English as mentioned in the prescribed text book, “unless told otherwise, in this class we shall use only English, even in conversations among students before, during, and after class” (Lohani & Nissani, 2008, p. 9 ). Thirdly, to monitor, facilitate, collect, and read the journal on a regular basis. Then, encouraging them to write about a wide variety of topics of their choice as free writing with a theme that has link to the text discussed in the class, we can ask students to leave a blank space between entries for room to comment later. This process holds significant place in learning through creating individual stories and poems when all the students write something during and after the class time. Finally, we can look for ways to share the journals between and among students. To ensure that the students understood the connection between the theory in the lectures (and readings), and the practice in real life; we do practice reflective journal writing in the classroom among assigning a series of questions each week to help students make connections between the lecture and the textbooks, and what learning really meant to them. Done honestly, writing neatens what affects us and who really we are. When the students are able to develop friendship with literary texts and make these texts part of their life and develop enthusiasm to decipher more and more texts from the works of imagination, their communication strength empowers and there meets the objectives of learning in the courses on technical communication for students of Media Studies, Science, and Engineering. As students start to find meaning in the texts in relation to their lives, it strengthens their reading habit, “in order to develop as a writer, one must be a reader” (Colonna & Gilbert, 2006, p. v), therefore helps them in vocabulary expansion, communication, production, presentation, and in overall level of understanding linking with background concept for writing, the reflective practice of journaling.

Even before one actually sits and writes, the most important thing I remember is that it makes us read and read, explore new worlds, new minds, and new avenues. In our case, English as language is used most effectively at its idiomatic best in literary texts as to enhance the students’ competence in creativity thus leading to their overall transformation most effectively. A good introduction to literature can compensate for the deficiencies of linguistic approach in the area of grammar, vocabulary and syntax that can enhance the students’ competence in creativity. Writing provides the students abundant practice with examples of the subtle and complex uses of grammar and vocabulary of a language. We all perform pretty well and in almost the same way in our subject matter, more specifically in the particular area of Science and Engineering, but what makes us different is our better skills in communication, may it be verbal or non-verbal, thereby we hunt the job, and lead the market.

Hiemstra (2001) puts “Journaling in its various forms is a means for recording personal thoughts, daily experiences, and evolving insights” (p. 20). In this regard, honoring the past in our own words with our own uncensored reflections, we document our memories before they are lost. This reflective process often evokes conversations with self and a real or even an imagined other person making the practitioners able to review or reread the earlier reflections with a progressive clarification of possible insights. Even with the sufficient use and attempts by the educators to encourage personal reflection in various ways, journaling still remains underused as a teaching or learning tool. My continuous effort to bolster creativity from the students’ side where the teacher merely facilitates or just positively motivates students to think with different thoughts to explore and explore has brought more creative writers from various disciplines who are more interdisciplinary in fact.
In the past thirty years friendship with Literature, and during my seven year journey at the Kathmandu University, discussing literary texts every semester, I along with my students have reached in such a state that I hardly find difference between myself (ourselves) and the authors. In the process of producing reflective understanding, I saw how the classroom became interactive time and again as the teaching and learning activity happened at the same time and product was seen in the form of individual journaling. Instead of one way, the learning happens in multiple levels, a differently depicted world produced by multiple discourses not only to deconstruct the accepted social categories, but also in believing multiple truths where our personal stories are set in cultural contexts.
As part of my own reflective journaling and along with the students, I have also created many stories, poems, and essays. While comparing to the first day of this teachering career, as I reflect I feel different now. I am different in the sense that because of reflection and assimilation, I have come to realize many defaults in my way of teaching, dealing, and evaluating the students that led me to make changes accordingly. I have gained confidence in making presentations in more effective ways. I have become more tolerant and respectful to the self and “other” cultural/ ideological differences. Moreover, this autoethnographic mode of inquiry led me to realize and reflect so much that my suppressed agonies, confusions, regrets, contempt, timidity, all got a platform to flourish into humility. Journaling, the product of reflective thinking has helped the students and me to improve our language skills once we passed through all (given) rigorous activities. Accordingly, I believe there are a number of potential benefits for learners in maintaining journal in a writing class. For example, students achieve enhanced intellectual growth and development especially as they gain more experience with the writing based on their lived experiences.
Colonna, M. & Gilbert, J. (2006). Reason to write. London: Oxford.
Hiemstra, R. (2001). Uses and benefits of journal writing. In L. M. English & M. A.

Gillen, (Eds.), Promoting journal writing in adult education (New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, No. 90, pp. 19-26). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Lohani, S. & Nissani, M. (Eds.). (2008). Flax golden tales. Kathmandu: Ekta.
Young, A. (1999). Teaching writing across the curriculum (3rd ed.). NJ: Prentice Hall.

Communication scholarship in Nepal: From ‘globalization’ to ‘glocalization’

– Nirmala Mani Adhikary
Communication, as a discipline of knowledge or as an academic field of study, has remained inherently problematic in many non-Western countries – Asians and Africans alike; Nepal being no exception. On the one hand, these countries indigenously inherit the concept of communication, and have been practicing it since time-immemorial. On the other, communication-as-modern-discipline-of-knowledge is borrowed from the West.
There must exist communication practice and theory in every living society. Thus a communication tradition, rich and refined both in theory and practice, should have been an inseparable part of Nepali culture as Nepal is the inheritor of culturally rich civilization. In this light, communication should be considered indigenous – both as practice and concept.
But, as a discipline of knowledge or as an academic field of study, curricula on communication have not been enriched with such indigenous content. In fact, the non-Western countries had three options while they were developing curricula of communication and/or allied disciplines. First, they could have drawn on native perspectives thereby primarily incorporating indigenous concepts, if not theories and models, of communication. Second, it was much easier for them to adopt solely the Western discursive paradigm. Third, they could have adopted comparative approach thus incorporating both indigenous and Western contents, and facilitating ‘indigenization’. Whereas indigenous theories are native, rooted in specific cultures, and emphasize the human experience in specific cultures; indigenization refers to processes of transforming U.S. theories so that they are appropriate in other cultures.
Of these, the adoption of the Western paradigm has been the general practice. Generally, the course curricula on communication and allied disciplines have been West-centric. There are profound reasons for this. I would like to mention three reasons. First, the ‘modern’ system of education itself has been adopted from the West. Second, as academic fields of study, communication, media, and journalism first gained recognition and evolved in the West, particularly in the USA. Third, most of all, the triumph of ‘globalization’ has been the decisive factor in this regard. ‘Globalization’ legitimizes unidirectional gateway for the flow of information. And, communication, as an academic field of study, has lackedS indigenous insights, and hence, it has been treated as an exogenous entity ‘imported’ from the West into non-Western countries.
In case of Nepal too, the study of communication in general, and communication theory in particular, has not been shaped in native perspectives. Even a cursory look at the curricula of Tribhuvan University (TU) and Purvanchal University (PU) is enough to observe that any indigenous concept/theory/model of communication is not incorporated there. The pattern is visible not only in case of communication theory, but in other areas of study also. 
 The issue should be viewed in a larger context. A general predisposition of considering ‘Americanization’/’Westernization’ as globalization is not new in Nepal. And, “‘West is the best’ psyche” is something that can be easily perceived. In this light, the acceptance of Western discursive paradigm and the rejection or apathy to native perspectives in the curricula implies that Westernization-as-Globalization has been the dominant paradigm for the discipline of communication in Nepal.
However, I have sought a different approach – ‘glocalization’, when I have an opportunity for designing the curriculum. In other words, I have sought to incorporate local contents and make the curriculum ‘glocalized’. I have been advocating de-westernization the curricula, and incorporating local/indigenous contents and perspectives. For instance, the curriculum we have adopted at KU contains Hindu, Buddhist and other theories/perspectives on communication in addition to the Western ones.
The very reason for such ‘glocalization’ in the curriculum is: this is the only way by which we can make the academic endeavor pertinent to our realities. We are in the age of ‘globalization’, it is true; but, still we are within particular society, culture, and space and time. The students who join our courses have to cope with both the local/national and the global/international. The incorporation of local contents owes to nationalism/patriotism, and to the consciousness of cultural identity.
I think localizing (and ‘glocalizing’) the course contents is essential for both practical and moral reasons. Practically, without the local contents the curriculum would be unrealistic to local realities and inapplicable in the local context. Any curriculum lacking the national/local/indigenous insights should also be rejected on moral ground. Our society represents old civilization with a known history of thousands of years and a distinct cultural identity of its own. It is the inheritor of culturally rich civilization rooted to the Vedic period. This reality must not be forgotten while designing and developing the curricula.
I would like to distinguish between local content and local issue. For me, to incorporate local content would mean incorporating some indigenous approaches/perspectives/theories/models. To accommodate local issue is another matter. For example, a professor may give example of some particular event from Nepal that follows Aristotelian pattern of communication even if the curriculum may stick to Western content (Aristotle’s model of communication) only. In such case, though local issue has been incorporated the curriculum is lacking originality. To incorporate local content, not merely the issue, is significant. As I have mentioned earlier, the curriculum we have adopted at KU contains Hindu, Buddhist and other theories/perspectives on communication in addition to the Western.  Likewise, the course on media ethics has been designed in such a way that it deals with Hindu ethical principles in addition to the ethical principles accepted in the Western discursive paradigm. In sum, such contents facilitate ‘glocal’ understanding among the students.
Though Westernization-as-Globalization perspective is still dominant for the discipline of communication in Nepal, the emerging practices signify an ongoing paradigm shift. Of Nepali universities, KU has already taken a step forward by incorporating communication theories of Bharata Muni and Bhartrihari, and also sadharanikaran model of communication (SMC) in the BMS curriculum. We are yet to see, whether and when other universities in Nepal will be modify the West-centric paradigms with promotion of the indigenous communication scholarship.
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