ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Caste Inequalities in Contemporary Assam

The prevalence of caste-based inequalities in contemporary Assam is examined in this article. Although scholars in the context of North East India in general have examined caste–tribe relations and racial discrimination, caste-based disparities and discrimination in Assam are yet to be explored in the academic discourse. It is argued that caste hierarchies are firmly embedded in the everyday life of Assamese society. An intersectional approach is necessary to re-examine the relation between caste inequalities and gender, tribe, and class in Assam.

Elusive Justice to Dalits in the ‘Land of Social Justice’

The recent inhuman incident of mixing human faeces in the overhead tank supplying water to Dalit colony in Vengaivayal village in Pudukkottai district of Tamil Nadu reflects the perpetuating violence against the Dalits. Locating this brutal violence within the larger framework of violence against Dalits in Tamil Nadu, the lackadaisical attitude of Dravidian parties when dealing with the issues related to Dalits is brought to the fore.

Harichand Thakur and the Chandals: Godhood and Socio-religious Reforms in 19th century Bengal

The 19th-century Bengal witnessed a social awakening of the Chandals who evolved gradually to more political ways of protesting. Both adaptability and resistance worked simultaneously in building collective aspiration and developing practices to achieve consciousness collectively. Their leader Harichand Thakur formulated plans of action against caste-based oppression to emancipate the Chandals and brought socio-religious transformation in the community. A strategy-oriented study of his life and activities explains reformer Harichand Thakur becoming a God.. The article finds spiritual vision motivating material changes within a community—a legacy uniting people beyond their caste, class, and gender.

Bhojanmata’s Struggle for Dignity

Caste consciousness imposes moral limits on preferential hiring in the mid-day meal schemes.

 

Caste Panchayats

Caste Panchayats and Caste Politics in India by Anagha Ingole, Singapore: Palgrave Macmillan, 2021; pp 196, price not available.

Engaging with Isabel Wilkerson’s Idea of Race

A meditation on Isabel Wilkerson’s critique of race that proceeds through an overview of Wilkerson’s multiple agendas, observations about her arguments, with respect to race, and an analysis of the intertwining of systematised discrimination (knowledge) and legalised violence (force of law).

 

Overcast Minds

Children from historically disadvantaged castes face systemic hurdles in education in India—ill-equipped schools, poorly trained teachers, discrimination—leading to high failure and dropout rates. Children from disadvantaged castes also face subtler psychological impediments. One such impediment is consciousness of negative stereotypes. Via an experiment, this study illustrates how caste consciousness could affect academic performance, and finds that children from disadvantaged castes perform poorly in tests when made aware of their caste and reservation status than otherwise. The study underlines the need for reform in how India implements its reservation policy to narrow some of the inter-caste differences in educational attainment.

Ambedkar in 2021, Episode 3: Probing Caste Violence at the Visible, Symbolic, and Structural Levels

In this episode, we speak to Parthasarathi Muthukkaruppan about the everyday aspects of caste violence and cultural modes of opposing subordination.

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