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THE NUCLEAR ARJUNA: A NARRATIVE CRITICISM OF VAJPAYEE'S LOK SABHA ADDRESS

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abstract
The thesis is a rhetorical and narrative criticism of Atal Bihari Vajpayee's 1998 pro-nuclear Lok Sabha address. Through Walter Fisher's narrative paradigm, I argue that Vajpayee's rhetoric uses the powerful values of the Hindu myth of Arjuna in the Bhagivad Gita to justify India's moves towards nuclear acquisition. The myth's function for the Prime Minister's justificatory discourse is to absolve conflicting moral identities of the present pro-nuclear India with the nation's staunch anti-nuclear past. Vajpayee's address, as a narrative containing good reasons for the nation's nuclear transition, elevates the nation's public moral debate to the transcendent values expressed by the 3,000 year old myth. As the greatest warrior of the Mahabharata, Arjuna operates as the universal human being who is struggling with moral choices between right and wrong actions. The Gita's conclusion with the warrior engaging in the Kurukshetra war becomes a powerful narrative that is made representative of Vajpayee's transition away from India's twenty-four year period of nuclear ambiguity.
subject
India
Myth
Narrative
Nuclear
Rhetoric
Vajpayee
contributor
DeLong, Brian LaMonte (author)
Beasley Von Burg, Alessandra (committee chair)
Louden, Allan (committee member)
Zulick, Margaret (committee member)
date
2011-02-16T21:42:13Z (accessioned)
2011-03-30T14:04:37Z (available)
2010 (issued)
degree
Communication (discipline)
embargo
2011-02-17 (terms)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/30395 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
THE NUCLEAR ARJUNA: A NARRATIVE CRITICISM OF VAJPAYEE'S LOK SABHA ADDRESS
type
Thesis

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