Dalits in Modern India - Vision and Values

Dalits in Modern India - Vision and Values

Product ID: 22772

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Author: S M Michael
Eminent Contributors/
Translator(s)/ Edito: S M Michael
Publisher: Sage Publications
Year: 2007
Language: English
Pages: 369
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9780761935711


This volume explores the social, economic, political and cultural content of the Dalit articulation and its relevance for the nation, both today and in the future.

One of the profound changes in contemporary Indian society has been the emergence of a new sense of identity among the Dalits. The Dalit movement not only rejects the very ideas of pollution, impurity and untouchability but in the process is forging a new vision for Indian society which is different from that espoused by the higher castes.

The first section addresses the contentious issue of the origins and development of untouchability in Indian civilization. The next section discusses the manner in which Dalits have confronted Brahmanic Hinduism, not just in its virulent form of Hindutva but also the more liberal forms, which have provided the dominant interpretations of Indian society and history.

The essays in the third section critique the sensibility which equates Indian tradition with Hinduism and locates within the Aryan heritage the essence of Indian civilization. The contributors highlight the alternative traditions nurtured within the Dalit movement which challenge the dominant order. An important essay shows how the problems faced by Dalit women are different from those encountered by non-Dalit women, despite the presence of many similarities.

The last section is devoted to the economic dimension. The contributors discuss the impact on the Dalits of the recent trends towers liberalization and privatization and the consequent withdrawal of the state, particularly in the context of employment opportunities and the policy of reservation.

This incisive and timely collection studies the aspirations of the marginalized masses for a new humanity based on the principles of equality, social justice and human dignity. It will attract a very wide readership particularly among sociologists, political scientists and social anthropologists as also those dealing with human rights, social movements and the Dalit phenomenon.


List of Tables



1. Untouchability and Stratification in Indian Civilization
2. Who is a Dalit?

3. Colonialism Within Colonialism: Phule’s Critique of Brahmin Power
4. Dalit Vision of a Just Society in India
5. Ambedkar, Buddhism and the Concept of Religion
6. The Dalit Movement in Mainstream Sociology
7. Liberation Movements in Comparative Perspective:
Dalit Indians and Black Americans

8. Sociology of India and Hinduism: Towards a Method
9. Hinduisation of Adivasis: A Case Study from South Gujarat
10. Ambedkar’s Daughters: A Study of Mahar Women in Ahmednagar
District of Maharashtra
11. The BSP in Uttar Pradesh: Whose Party is It?

12. Ambedkar’s Interpretation of the Cast system, its
Economic Consequences and suggested Remedies
13. Dalits and Economic Policy: Contributions of Dr B R Ambedkar
14. Reservation Policy and the Empowerment of Dalits
15. Scheduled Castes, Employment and Social Mobility

About the Editor and Contributors