Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Critical Psychology

pp 941-947

Indian Psychology

  • Anand ParanjpeAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Simon Fraser University Email author 


Psychological concepts and techniques have been an integral part of the old and rich intellectual and cultural traditions of India. They are an integral part of what has been labelled “Indian Philosophy” in a way parallel to the premodern history of Western psychology. Modern psychology was introduced in Indian universities during the British colonial period. Indian scholars trained in British and American universities followed Western models, and these models continue to be followed, often in a poorly imitative way. The British rulers denigrated the Indian traditional of learning, and to some extent a colonial mentality of assuming an inherent superiority of the West has persisted even after attaining political independence in 1947 (Nandy, 1983). A revival of the distinctly Indian tradition of psychology has been formally started with the proclamation of “manifesto” by a group of psychologists in 2002 (for a text of the manifesto, see

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