There is an irony here. It used to be a vision of the Left that politics was about freeing people from shackles which had been imposed on them by dint of their birth [...] But for many people on the Left, the dream seems to have been rejected. It is somehow too entangled with the Enlightenment project, too modernist, too "Western." For some reason Western intellectuals, and many non-Western too, have decided that people in the Third World do not want or like freedom or change, that 'authentic' Third World people prefer ancient communal ties and oneness with the earth. They tell them to be what they were born, and stay what they were born, on pain of being accused of inauthenticity and mental colonization.

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