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Practicing CasteOn Touching and Not Touching$
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Aniket Jaaware

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780823282265

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823282265.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Practicing Caste
Author(s):

Aniket Jaaware

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823282265.003.0001

This introductory chapter presents the main themes of the book. The major theme is that of “touch” as it constitutes touchability/untouchability in society. Another somewhat implicit theme is that of dalit literature. This literature is the best-known feature, currently, of Indian and non-Indian understanding of the relationship between caste and modernity. Quite a lot of non-Indian interest comes to caste after encountering dalit literature. Ultimately, this book attempts to understand operations of touching and not touching, initially in themselves, but increasingly in their social operations as they relate to caste. To arrive at an understanding of caste that is different from those already available in the saturated field of caste studies, one has to attempt to think everything differently; and to do that one has to stop depending on material—texts, ideas, analyses—already available.

Keywords:   touch, touchability, untouchability, dalit literature, caste, modernity, social operations, caste studies

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