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Orsini, Francesca (2022) 'Awqāt/Aukāt.' In: Menon, Dilip M., (ed.), Changing Theory: Concepts from the Global South. New Delhi: Routledge, pp. 325-336. (Transdisciplinary Souths)

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Awqāt, the Arabic broken plural of waqt or time, has undertaken a remarkable semantic journey in India. From meaning “times”, it has come to mean: 1. State; condition; circumstances; 2. Means; resources; 3. Ability; strength, power. In everyday confrontations and caste politics in contemporary India, aukāt is spoken as a warning and a threat. It has come to mean status, or rather the trespassing of one’s “natural” subordinate status, with the promise of retribution or punishment. “Terī kyā aukāt hai?” means “You count for nothing”, “You are overstepping the boundaries of your subordinate condition”, “I am warning you.” Aukāt marks both the coming of new times, when previously subordinated individuals and groups reject the marks of subordination, and the excessive acts of real and symbolic violence that often accompany such rejection.

Item Type: Book Chapters
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Languages, Cultures & Linguistics
ISBN: 9781032187525
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2022 12:30
Funders: European Union

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