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

Religion and CasteSubscribe to Religion and Caste

Anthropological Archives

This paper revisits earlier ethnographic writing and assumption as an “archive” in order to reconsider Dalit “religions.” It explores the nature of power in the caste order when viewed from Dalit positions and perspectives, the historical constitution of caste under the British empire by drawing on recent scholarship, the terms, at once, of the Dalit’s critical exclusion from and unequal inclusion in caste domains, Dalit responses to hierarchy and authority in everyday terrains, and, finally, the intimate intermeshing of religion and politics, both broadly understood.

Contextualising Muslim Identity: Ansaris, Deobandis, Barelwis

This paper argues against a monolithic, essentialised reading of the Indian Muslim identity. Drawing from research in Mubarakpur, Azamgarh, it highlights the various schisms within the Muslim identity. Telling the story of identity through the eyes of lower caste Muslims, the paper shows that caste, class and maslaki affiliations remain important markers of identity within Muslim society. The very notion of "Islamic identity" is itself a matter of fierce interpretative debate among the Muslims. Drawing on evidence from madrasas, the paper argues that the "other" within the madrasa is not a Hindu but a fellow Muslim from another maslak.

Parashuram: Icon of New Brahminism

The brahmins all over India are involved in competition with other castes in the modern political arena, leading them to forge unity within the caste and alliances with other castes, including the dalits. Parashuram, the mythical ancient brahmin warrior has become the icon of this new brahminism.

Hinduism and Politics

This paper examines the role of 'Hinduism' in the course of socio-historical development in the Indian subcontinent, how there has been a gradual process of construction of a 'Hindu', community and one of rendering it increasingly militant.
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