In late-nineteenth-century Kerala, a man flamboyantly rode a villuvandi (bullock cart) along a road. What might sound like a mundane act was, at that time, a defiant form of protest. Riding animal-pulled vehicles was a privilege enjoyed only by the upper castes. This man, hailing from the untouchable Pulaya community, was attacking caste-based discrimination through his act. He was none other than Ayyankali, a social reformer and activist.
Featuring several such inspiring accounts of individuals who tirelessly battled divisive forces all their lives, this book seeks to enhance present-day India’s imagination and shape its perception of the Dalit community. Based on original research on historical and contemporary figures such as B.R. Ambedkar, Babu Jagjivan Ram, Gurram Jashuva, K.R. Narayanan, Soyarabai and Rani Jhalkaribai, among many others, Makers of Modern Dalit History will be a significant addition to the Dalit discourse.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
SUDARSHAN RAMABADRAN is a writer and columnist. He is an alumnus of Vivekananda College, University of Madras, and the Asian College of Journalism, Chennai. He has worked in various capacities, such as deputy director and senior research fellow, at the India Foundation and headed its Center for Public Diplomacy and Soft Power in Chennai, besides founding the Tamil Nadu Young Thinkers Forum. He has previously worked with the New Indian Express in Chennai and the Department of Information, Government of Gujarat. He has completed the Legislative Fellows Program in Washington DC, a professional exchange programme organized and run by the U.S. Department of State.
GURU PRAKASH PASWAN is one of the national spokespersons of the Bharatiya Janata Party. He is an alumnus of the National Law Institute University, Bhopal, and the Indian Law Institute, New Delhi. He is an assistant professor of law at Patna University and has submitted his doctoral thesis. He is an adviser of the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He was previously a part of the steering committee of the Australia India Youth Dialogue, which is a pre-eminent track-two young leaders’ dialogue between the two nations. He has completed the International Visitor Leadership Program organized and run by the U.S. Department of State.
April 2021 | Penguin Random House India
Rs 399 | Paperback