Author: Jaideep A. Prabhu is a doctoral student in History from Vanderbilt University, where he is writing his dissertation on India’s nuclear policy, titled, Nuclear Dharma: India’s Wandering after the Atom. Prabhu also holds an undergraduate degree in Engineering from the same university and a Master’s from the George Washington University. Although Prabhu’s core competency is foreign and nuclear policy in Western Europe, South Asia, and the Middle East, he is keen observer of science & technology, energy and security policy, and religion.
Prabhu spends any spare time engaged in philosophy, martial arts, and literature. A polyglot, Prabhu also dabbles in cooking and outdoor activities such as kayaking and scuba, and follows football and tennis.
Title: Chaturanga was a game developed in the 6th century CE in India during the Gupta Empire and is widely considered to be the precursor to shatranj, or modern-day chess. A Sanskrit word, chaturanga literally means ‘four limbs’ (chatur – four, anga – limbs). However, it is also understood to refer to the four divisions of the army – elephants, cavalry, chariots, and foot soldiers, which would today probably translate to army, navy, air force, and rocket forces. Applied to statecraft, it could also imply the four methods of dealing with foreign powers – saama, daana, bheda, and danda. Or, to take it as Rabindranath Tagore did in a novel by the same name, chaturanga could even refer to the purusharthas, the four aims of human existence according to Hindu philosophy – dharma, artha, kama, moksha.
Twitter handle: Orsoraggiante [pronunciation: oʊrsoʊ rɑ:dʒi:ɑ:ŋteɪ] is, as anyone speaking Italian would immediately guess, two words – orso and raggiante. Orso means bear in Italian (from Ursus in Latin) and raggiante is the Italian word for radiant (with joy) as well as radiating (nuclear). The double entendre works better with the French word rayonnement, but this is just a twitter handle and not a deposition! As an aside, Michel Pastoureau’s The Bear: History of a Fallen King might be a good read on the noble bear.
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