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Reading Annihilation of Caste from a Cultural Perspective

Dipak Barkhade

All About Ambedkar: A Journal on Theory and Praxis, Volume 2, Number 2 | Full Text PDF



Annihilation of Caste is a layered text about and against the caste-system. It reveals political thought of Babasaheb Ambedkar in an elaborate manner. The present paper aims at unravelling a multi-layered face of this text and a multi-dimensional nature of the Ambedkarite thought from a cultural perspective. It uses the philosophic letter of Rohith Vemula, film, interview, anecdote, etc. in this regard. It argues that though Ambedkar is impersonal in his mode of writing as a political scientist and a social scientist, he presents his critique of caste problematic with an affective force. While Babasaheb wanted to convey Hindu reformers their intellectual fallacy and an urgency for them to listen his critique of the caste-system, Annihilation of Caste illustrates his affective force by inviting readers to participate in the debate on the abolishment of the caste-system. The paper calls for a strong relevance of Annihilation of Caste to highlight that this text has a status of after-life and Babasaheb is a larger figure in the arena of cultural studies.

KEYWORDS: caste, culture, Hinduism, Ambedkarism, identity and affect



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