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Self-Consciousness of the Dalits as 'Subalterns': Reflections on Gramsci in South Asia.

Zene, Cosimo (2011) 'Self-Consciousness of the Dalits as 'Subalterns': Reflections on Gramsci in South Asia.' Rethinking Marxism. A Journal of Economics, Culture & Society., 23 (1). pp. 83-99.

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In this article I reflect on Gramsci’s category of the ‘‘subaltern,’’ taking into consideration recent contributions to this topic, particularly those offered by Joseph Buttigieg, Giorgio Baratta, and Marcus Green. The latter, besides presenting an eloquent critique of Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak’s article ‘‘Can the Subaltern Speak?’’ allows me to return to Gramscian sources so as to carry out a radicalization of Gramsci’s positions with reference to the experience of ‘‘Untouchables’’/Dalits in South Asia. There is little doubt that inquiry into the ‘‘subaltern question’’ in India today cannot ignore the ‘‘Dalit question.’’ The case study referring to the Rishi-Dalits of Bangladesh accentuates still further the precarious position of these groups as subalterns, but also their aspiration to overcome subalternity.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Subalterns, Dalits, Antonio Gramsci, South Asia, Bangladesh
SOAS Departments & Centres: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of Religions and Philosophies
ISSN: 0893-5696 print/1475-8059 online/11/010083-17
Copyright Statement: Association for Economic and Social Analysis
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): 10.1080/08935696.2011.536342
Depositing User: Cosimo Zene
Date Deposited: 04 May 2011 15:43
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/11711

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