Inequalities, Caste, and Social Exclusion: Dalit Women’s Citizenship
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The article focuses on the problematic issues of the extreme degree of inequalities, discrimination and social exclusion as faced by women and in particular Dalit women in a democracy. Social justice is the central column of a socially inclusive democracy and the lack of it is reflected in the unequal economic, political and social status of women as is so highly evidenced in the case of Dalit (Dalit means ‘broken, scattered’ in Hindi, Sanskrit and refers to ethnic groups. The term is officially referred by the State as scheduled caste.) women and other marginalized groups in India.
KeywordsGender Poverty Democracy Discrimination Vulnerability Violence
I would like to thank Ms. Anitha Shanthakumari and Dr. Monica Erwer for their valuable comments on this paper. I remain indebted to Ms. Hannah Broman who collaborated with me on various aspects of the longer paper. This paper is a shortened version. Lastly, this work is a tribute to millions of women who live the conditions of poverty, caste and gender discrimination, and yet teach us what it means to be citizens, to achieve agency over their lives, refusing bondage and slavery in democracies.
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