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

CasteSubscribe to Caste

Research Radio Ep 14: The Myth of Vegetarianism in India

In this episode, we speak to Balmurli Natarajan and Suraj Jacob about the politics of vegetarianism in India.

Bahujan Representation on the Big Screen: A Reading List

With the release of films like Sairat (2016) and Kaala (2018), Indian cinema is taking a step towards acknowledging stories from the margins. However, what does it mean in terms of representation and forging a path towards equality?

Demystifying Caste in Bengal

Although caste is a crucial reality in West Bengal, a declining Dalit movement post partition, the neglect of caste questions by the Left Front, and the failure of forging a broader Dalit solidarity due to fragmented Dalit constituencies have led to the invisibility of caste in the politics of the state.

The Political Economy of the Jat Agitation for Other Backward Class Status

The changing caste realities in Haryana and their links with economic processes became visible in the recent protests of Jats for Other Backward Class status. The concerns of Jats are embedded in twin processes initiated in 1991: the “Market” and the “Mandal.” Led by economic liberalisation, the Market demands certain attributes and levels of education and social skills to profit from its growth process, and Jats are perceived to be lacking in these aspects. In contrast, the Mandal has facilitated the relative mobility of lower castes, such as OBCs and Dalits, through reservations in government jobs and education. Thus, Jats have responded to this crisis by changing the discourse from one of domination to one that highlights their deprivation to bolster their demands for OBC status.

A New Sociology Awaits Us

Classes of Labour: Work and Life in a Central Indian Steel Town by Jonathan P Parry (in collaboration with Ajay T G), New Delhi: Social Science Press, 2019; pp xxx + 702 (biblio+index), ₹ 1,850.

Sanitation and Hygiene in India

Using data from the India Human Development Survey, this examination of toilet possession and personal hygiene in India shows that the strongest influences on households in India having a toilet were their circumstances: standard of living, educational level, and whether they possessed ancillary amenities. However, toilet possession depended also on households’ social environment; households in more developed villages were more likely to have a toilet than those in less developed villages. Open defecation is due to a lack of development and not because caste, ritual pollution, and untouchability instil in rural Indians a preference for defecating in the open.

Force-fitting Ethnicity onto Caste

Mobilizing the Marginalized: Ethnic Parties without Ethnic Movements by Amit Ahuja, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019; pp xxvi + 238, ₹ 550. From Hierarchy to Ethnicity: The Politics of Caste in Twentieth-Century India by Alexander Lee, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020; pp xiv + 272, price not indicated.

The Story of a Peasant Struggle in Jiwandesar, Rajasthan

Farmers of Jiwandesar, a village in Rajasthan have waged a struggle for the past two and half decades for getting irrigation water from Gang canal. However, due to the larger political economy of the region where large and influential farmers resist any cutback in their water allowances from the Gang canal and the inert attitude of successive state governments which do not want to antagonise the large farmers’ lobby, the struggle of has not led to a fruition.

Dalit Feminist Voices on Reproductive Rights and Reproductive Justice

Previous research has addressed questions of reproductive justice and the stratifications of Indian women’s reproductive lives in terms of class position and economic status. However, the question of caste has received little attention in the literature and there has been a lack of research on assisted reproductive technologies and caste along with the absence of Dalit feminists speaking out on reproductive technologies. This paper attempts to begin exploring the significance of caste by drawing on in-depth interviews with Dalit feminists who challenge dominant understandings of surrogacy in both international and national debates on reproductive technologies. It highlights how an insistence on the wider socio-economic context of women’s lives challenges notions of reproductive rights, replacing them by reproductive justice.

The Making of the Mridangam

Sebastian & Sons: A Brief History of Mrdangam Makers by T M Krishna, Chennai: Context, 2020; pp 366, ₹ 799.

The ‘Ideal’ Brahmin

Renunciation and Untouchability in India: The Notional and the Empirical in the Caste Order by Srinivasa Ramanujam, New Delhi: Routledge, 2019; pp xiii + 172, ₹ 995.

World Population Day 2020: Examining Census Construction and Communal Strife in Colonial India

The British Raj, by attempting to reduce the diversity of the Indian populace into numbers that could fit a particular category, ignored the ideals of social justice and instead furthered communal mobilisation through their policy of “divide and rule.”

Pages

Back to Top