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  • A Study of the Kural: Concepts and Themes

    India has a live, longstanding, and multiple traditions of secular texts and treatise on statecraft, not only in Sanskrit but also in Dravidian traditions in Tamil. For a total picture of Indian civilization and culture there is need to explore texts other than just Sanskrit. In this category there is a powerful and compact text in Tamil from south India called the Tirukkural by Tiruvalluvar, also known as the Kural.


    The Nitisara by Kamandaka: Continuity and Change from Kautilya’s Arthashastra

    This study compares Indian traditions of statecraft in Kamandaka’s Nitisara, or the Elements of Polity, with the earlier foundational root text of Kautilya’s Arthashastra. There are commonalities, dissimilarities and uniqueness in the texts. However, key values and concepts across time do not seem to have changed and remain relevant even today.


    Kautilya’s Arthashastra: an intellectual portrait: the classical roots of modern politics in India

    The generalist reader, as also those interested in indigenous historical knowledge, owes a debt of gratitude to Professor Subrata K. Mitra and Dr. Michael Liebig for bringing out this remarkable study. This is especially so since the IDSA has been investing for several years now in studying indigenous historical knowledge and its links to modern Indian political thought. Professor Mitra and Dr.

    July 2018

    Kautilya’s Arthashastra: Indian Strategic Culture and Grand Strategic Preferences

    The utility of the theory of strategic culture to explain the choices nation-states make is still to be convincingly proven. Alastair Iain Johnston has provided a viable notion of strategic culture that is falsifiable, its formation traced empirically, and its effect on state behaviour differentiated from other non-ideational variables. Following his methodological framework, Kautilya’s Arthashastra is identified as the ‘formative’ ideational strategic text which is assessed to illuminate Indian strategic culture.

    July-September 2018

    The New Arthashastra: A Security Strategy for India, edited by Gurmeet Kanwal

    The clamour for a national security strategy has become part of a constant refrain that accompanies every debate on India’s strategic culture or national security outlook. This repeated call for a security strategy stems from a perceived lack of clarity for functionaries within the government as well as the larger audience. An important constituent amongst the latter are a large number of countries that increasingly look upon India as an important partner in the evolving geopolitical environment.

    July 2017

    The Arthasastra in a Transcultural Perspective: Comparing Kautilya with Sun-Zi, Nizam al-Mulk, Barani and Machiavelli

    • Publisher: Pentagon Press

    This book is the product of a collaborative effort by the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi; South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University; and Institute of South Asian Studies, National University Singapore. The volume contains papers exploring Kautilya’s Arthasastra in a transcultural perspective, comparing it with the thoughts of Sun-Zi, Nizam al-Mulk, Barani and Machiavelli.

    • ISBN 978-81-8274-938-2
    • Price: ₹. 995
    • E-copy available

    Indigenous Historical Knowledge: Kautilya and His Vocabulary (Volume III)

    Indigenous Historical Knowledge: Kautilya and His Vocabulary (Volume III)
    • Publisher: Pentagon Press

    This book is the third in a series of three volumes on "Kautilya and His Vocabulary" as a part of the "Indigenous Historical Knowledge" project undertaken by the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), New Delhi. The edited volumes contain select papers presented in a series of workshops, national and international seminars organised by the Institute. The project is an attempt to trace, look into, analyse and relate with the indigenous strategic thinking in India. These volumes aim at initiating the study, internalisation, spread and consolidation of Kautilya's Arthashastra in the strategic domain. The four focus themes in the three volumes are foreign policy, intelligence, war and internal security as they relate to contemporary times.

    • ISBN 978-81-8274-909-2,
    • Price: ₹. 795
    • E-copy available

    Understanding Dharma and Artha in Statecraft through Kautilya’s Arthashastra

    This monograph engages with and explores the concepts of dharma and artha in Kautilya's Arthashastra and also the Mahabharata, and provides a few contemporary examples.


    Kautilya’s Arthashastra: Restoring its Rightful Place in the Field of International Relations

    India’s rise in the twenty-first century has resulted in renewed attention on the country, especially in the sphere of strategic thought. This focus has brought into limelight ancient India’s pioneering text on polity called Kautilya’s Arthashastra (KA).Contingent with that is a growing interest in exploring the relevance of KA in the contemporary world.

    April 2016

    Coping with Environmental Challenges: The Importance of Evolving a Balance between Artha, Kama and Dharma

    Coping with Environmental Challenges: The Importance of Evolving a Balance between Artha, Kama and Dharma

    Only by making the concept of dharma central can a balance be evolved between the trivarga of artha, kama and dharma and lifestyle changes introduced to cope with climate change.

    March 23, 2016