New Book — Dalit Text: Aesthetics and Politics Re-imagined, Co-edited by Judith Misrahi-Barak, Nicole thiara, K. Satyanarayana

238 pages, Routledge

Paperback ISBN 9780367218416
Hardback ISBN 9781138494572
E-book ISBN 9780367149031

UK and US versions available; South Asian version available in August

This book, companion to the much-acclaimed Dalit Literatures in India, examines questions of aesthetics and literary representation in a wide range of Dalit literary texts. It looks at how Dalit literature, born from the struggle against social and political injustice, invokes the rich and complex legacy of oral, folk and performative traditions of marginalised voices. The essays and interviews systematically explore a range of literary forms, from autobiographies, memoirs and other testimonial narratives, to poems, novels or short stories, foregrounding the diversity of Dalit creation. Showcasing the interplay between the aesthetic and political for a genre of writing that has ‘change’ as its goal, the volume aims to make Dalit writing more accessible to a wider public, for the Dalit voices to be heard and understood. The volume also shows how the genre has revolutionised the concept of what literature is supposed to mean and define. 

Effervescent first-person accounts, socially militant activism and sharp critiques of a little-explored literary terrain make this essential reading for scholars and researchers of social exclusion and discrimination studies, literature (especially comparative literature), translation studies, politics, human rights and culture studies.

Table of Contents


1. Introduction: Aesthetics or Politics? Judith Misrahi-Barak, K. Satyanarayana and Nicole Thiara

Part I: Speaking out

2. An Interview with Des Raj Kali, by Rajkumar Hans

Followed by: Des Raj Kali’s Shanti Parav: Experimental Punjabi Dalit Fiction

3. An Interview with Manoranjan Byapari, by Sipra Mukherjee

Followed by: Manoranjan Byapari: Choosing to Write Anger

4. An Interview with Kalyani Thakur Charal, by Jayati Gupta

Followed by: The Aesthetics of Dalit Literature: A Case Study

5. An Interview of Cho. Dharman, by R. Azhagarasan and Arul

Followed by: Cho. Dharman: Caste and ‘Karisal’ Literature in Tamil Nadu, by Kiran Keshavamurthy

Part II: Writing from within: Genre and Gender

6. Author’s Notes or Revisions? The Politics of Form in P. Sivakami’s Two Novels, Kanak Yadav

7. Of Subjecthood and Form: On Reading Two Dalit Short Stories from Gujarat, India, Santosh Dash

8. Janu and Saleena Narrating Life: Subjects and Spaces, Carmel Christy

9. Mother as fucked: Re-imagining Dalit Female Sexuality in Sahil Parmar’s Poetry, Gopika Jadeja

10. A Pox Upon Your House – Exploring Caste and Gender in Tulsi Ram’s Murdahiya, Shivani Kapoor

Part III: Reading across

11. Dalit Literature in Translation: A Symptomatic Reading of Sharankumar Limbale’s Akkarmashi in English Translation,Arun Prabha Mukherjee

12. Translating Dalit Literature: Re-Drawing the Map of Cultural Politics,Maya Pandit-Narkar

Part IV: Looking through

13. Notes on Questions of Dalit Art,Deeptha Achar

14. (Re)imaging Caste in Graphic Novels: a study of A Gardener in the Wasteland and Bhimayana: Experiences of Untouchability, Ruchika Bhatia and Devika Mehra

15. Dalits and the Spectacle of Victimhood in Telugu Cinema,Chandra Sekhar


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