In this explosive book, Suraj Yengde, a first-generation Dalit scholar educated across continents, challenges deep-seated beliefs about caste and unpacks its many layers. He describes his gut-wrenching experiences of growing up in a Dalit basti, the multiple humiliations suffered by Dalits on a daily basis, and their incredible resilience enabled by love and humour. As he brings to light the immovable glass ceiling that exists for Dalits even in politics, bureaucracy and judiciary, Yengde provides an unflinchingly honest account of divisions within the Dalit community itself-from their internal caste divisions to the conduct of elite Dalits and their tokenized forms of modern-day untouchability-all operating under the inescapable influences of Brahminical doctrines.
This path-breaking book reveals how caste crushes human creativity and is disturbingly similar to other forms of oppression, such as race, class and gender. At once a reflection on inequality and a call to arms, Caste Matters argues that until Dalits lay claim to power and Brahmins join hands against Brahminism to effect real transformation, caste will continue to matter.
About the Author
Suraj Yengde is a Shorenstein Center inaugural post-doctoral fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. He has worked with leading international organizations in Geneva, London and New York, and is associate editor of Caste: A Global Journal of Social Exclusion. His writings have featured in India Today, the Indian Express, Hindustan Times, Economic and Political Weekly, Huffington Post, the Conversation, Globe Post, Mail and Guardian, South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies, and Social Transformations, among other leading publications.