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Voices of Resistance: Caste, Exclusion and Race

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09 November 2016
4:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Benzie Building, Manchester Metropolitan University
Oxford Road
M15 6BG

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ESRC Festival of Social Science logo

This event coincided with the 125th anniversary of the birth of Dr. Bhimrao Ramji (‘Babasaheb’) Ambedkar (1891-1956), one of the world’s greatest human rights thinkers and activists.

Caste prejudice and discrimination have been relatively hidden or overlooked in British society since substantial South Asian communities were established here in the post-war era. What is the extent of caste discrimination in this country? How has the British context impacted on the development of caste identities? How have individuals and groups challenged exclusionary practices?

The event highlighted and explored diverse responses to caste discrimination in contemporary life by drawing on different perspectives from law, religion and community activism. This event placed caste within the broader context of how attitudes towards migrant groups and communities have changed over time and how racism, discrimination and exclusion have been expressed and resisted.

Our intention was to attract a broad audience and to provide a space for people who are interested in listening to and discussing a range of different perspectives.

Professor David Mosse, Professor of Anthropology at SOAS, University of London – followed by audience Q&A.

Guest speakers and panellists included:

Dalit author Jai Anbu reading from his novel Betel Leaves followed by a performance of Dalit songs and drumming by Revd. Raj Bharat Patta, honorary chaplain at St. Peter’s Church and Chaplaincy
Dr Sushrut Jadhav, Senior Lecturer in Cross-cultural Psychiatry at University College London and Consultant Psychiatrist, Camden Homeless Outreach Services & Islington Mental Health Rehabilitation Services
Dr Nicole Thiara, Lecturer at Nottingham Trent University specialising in post-colonial literature and organiser of the AHRC-funded research network: ‘Writing, Analysing, Translating Dalit Literature’
Burjor Avari, Honorary Research fellow in the Department of History at Manchester Metropolitan University