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This book is a comprehensive introduction to dalits in India (who comprise over one-sixth of the country’s population) from the origins of caste system to the present day. Despite a plethora of provisions for affirmative action in the Indian Constitution, dalits are largely excluded from the mainstream except for a minuscule section. The book traces the multifarious changes that befell them during the colonial period and their development thereafter under the leadership of Babasaheb Ambedkar in the centre of political arena. It looks at hitherto unexplored aspects of the degeneration of the dalit movement during the post-Ambedkar period, as well as salient contemporary issues such as the rise of the Bahujan Samaj Party, dalit capitalism, the occupation of dalit discourse by NGOs, neoliberalism and its impact, and the various implicit or explicit emancipation schemas thrown up by them. The work also discusses ideology, strategy and tactics of the dalit movement; touches upon one of the most contentious issues of increasing divergence between the dalit and Marxist movements; and delineates the role of the state, both colonial and post-colonial, in shaping dalit politics in particular ways. A tour de force, this book brings to the fore many key contemporary concerns and will be of great interest to students, scholars and teachers of politics and political economy, sociology, history, social exclusion studies and the general reader.
The Past, Present and Future of Theology of Interreligious Dialogue brings together several of the most widely regarded specialists who have contributed to theological reflection on religious diversity and interreligious encounter. The chapters are united by the consistent theme of the obligation to engage with the challenges that emerge from the tension between the doctrinal tradition(s) of Christianity and the need to reconsider them in light of and in response to the fact of religious otherness. As a whole, these reflections are motivated by the desire to bring together a significant selection of different theological approaches that have been developed and appropriated in order to engage with religious difference in the past and present, as well as to suggest possibilities for the future. This confluence of perspectives reveals the complexity of theological reflection on religious diversity, and gives some indication of future challenges that must be acknowledged, and perhaps successfully met, in the ongoing attempt to address a universal reality in light of traditional doctrinal particularities and cultural concerns.
In Indian context.
This volume explores cultural repression in India and ways in which it is overcome. It studies the burgeoning Dalit politics in North India and shows how Dalit women heroes (viranganas) of the 1857 Rebellion have emerged as symbols of Dalit assertion in Uttar Pradesh and are being used by the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) to build the image of its leader, Mayawati. It demonstrates how myths and memories of the role of Dalits in India's freedom struggle are employed for constructing identity and reconstructed for political mobilization. Key feature include: – some of the tales used to develop political consciousness at the grass-roots level; – stories picked up from among the people themselves: reinterpreted; packaged; and disseminated orally or via pamphlets; – how gods, heroes and other cultural resources of each caste are converted into political capital by giving them a visual image through calendars, statues, posters and memorials; – how the BSP creates and recreates historical material to expand its electoral base. Based on field studies and secondary information, the author outlines the politics of dissent which uses historical and cultural resources as identity markers in political mobilization. This book is invaluable for students of politics, sociology and history and all those engaged in Dalit studies.
In Indian context.

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