Bangalore International Centre had arranged a Talk on “Re-Search for Gandhi in Germany – Past and Present” on Monday, 5 th October, 2009 at 6.00 PM in its Conference Hall.
Mr. Christian Bartolf, Founder Director of the Gandhi Information Centre, Berlin, who delivered the talk took a totally unconventional way of presenting his basic thesis as to how Gandhi was influenced by thinkers, like Tolstoy, in developing his ethical principles and his philosophy of Satyagraha, first in South Africa and, later on, in India. He also outlined as to how these principles were imbibed and practiced in the West at a much later day. The approach Mr. Bartolf followed in expounding his thesis was to take the audience along the route he took to conduct his own research on Gandhiji’s life and philosophy, including Gandhiji’s correspondence with his contemporary thinkers. He wondered aloud as to how two contemporaries – Hitler and Gandhiji –, both of whom penned their autobiographies, differed so radically in their philosophy and approach and thought that a research on this topic would be very interesting. Prof. Jeevan Kumar, Professor of Political Science, Bangalore University and Director of Centre for Gandhian Studies moderated the interactive session and added valuable inputs to the multi-faceted personality of Gandhiji.