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The South Asia Initiative Presents:

Chinnaiah Jangam, Carleton University
Bonded Souls and Binding Histories: Epistemologies of Caste and Race in the Modern World

Thursday, April 14, 2011
4:30pm
Nord room 410

While pointing out the contradictions within European modernity, this talk tries to connect the lives and struggles of African Americans who were ironically enslaved by the modern ideas and institutions (material and spiritual) untouchable (Dalit) lives and struggles whose enslavement based on caste predated colonial modernity but became entrenched during the high noon of British imperialism. This talk uses selective examples from the life narratives and theoretical interventions of pioneers on the issues of caste and race such as W. E. B. DuBois, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, Shyam Sunder, Jala Rangaswamy and Kusuma Dharmanna to explore the interconnections between racial discrimination and caste discrimination to weave a theoretical thread binding their lives and aspirations for human dignity and social equality.


Chinnaiah Jangam is an historian of South Asia who hails from the Telangana region in South India. He studied at the University of Hyderabad and Jawaharlal Nehru University in India and earned his Ph. D. from the Department of History, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London in (2005), where his research focused on the intellectual history of Dalits. He is the recipient of several prestigious awards including Felix Scholarship for doctoral studies and a Guggenheim Dissertation Fellowship and has been a post-doctoral fellow at the International Center for Advanced Studies, New York University. Currently he is an Assistant Professor of History at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. Before joining Carleton, he taught at Wagner College in New York City. His areas of interest include: Dalits; Nationalism and Decolonization; Modernism and Inequality, Dalit and slave narratives; gender and social memory; caste, Christianity and Dalits. He is working on a book manuscript titled Dalits and Decolonization: Caste and the Politics of Nationalism in South Asia 1900-1950. His current research focuses on the comparative analysis of caste and race and discourses of emancipation.

This event is co-sponsored by the Hallinan Project for Peace and Social Justice, the Department of Religious Studies, and the Social Justice Institute at CWRU.

The South Asia Initiative seeks to draw attention to South Asia and South Asian Studies at Case Western Reserve University. It is the mission of the South Asia Initiative to encourage scholarly discourse, appreciation and understanding of South Asian cultures and issues. Please visit http://www.case.edu/artsci/southasia.