Annihilation of Caste
B.R. Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste is one of the most important, yet neglected, works of political writing from India. Written in 1936, it is an audacious denunciation of Hinduism and its caste system. Ambedkar – a figure like ...more
It was very much intellectually stimulating for me.
This book is for those who want to want to know how to put forth an opinion, how an ideal speech should be written, how to be objective but still stand firm against oppression & injustice. The most important reason is that it is an eye-opener ...more
Arundhati Roy is a deadly butcher. Not a ruthless clumsy one. But like a seasoned assassin. She chooses her target carefully. Equips herself with unfailing arms and ammunition by hours and hours of stern research. And then she strikes. Relentlessly. Mercilessly. She strikes to kill. Kill the target in the eyes of the reader. Even if the target survives, the scars from the bruises remain forever.
This time the victim was - the most famous Indian in the world - Mohandas ...more
I think it is a great book. Ambedkar tells us what is rotten in India. Being an 'Untouchable' himself, he knew the situation of lower castes inside out. Indian society is predominantly divided into four castes. Those at the top do work in fields such as education, business, law and so forth, while the lowest castes do the manual work, and then there are those who are without caste; their situation is the worst in Indian society. Even though a vast population is affected by the caste system, it ...more
Ambedkar's book first.
The Jat-Pat-Todak-Mandal was a society for communal reformation. They wanted to remove ...more
Reading this Critical Edition of The Annihilation of Caste is like watching back-to-back one-sided boxing matches. The other bloke is helplessly holding his hands up to his face as vicious body-blows rain upon him. As the audience, you periodically wince, but you also enjoy the systematic dismantling of the Other - in this case, Gandhi and Hinduism.
I enjoyed Roy's introduction, in and of itself very informative as well as exceptionally good in setting the context for Dr Ambedkar's undelivered speech. A brief history of caste and anti-caste activism in independent India would also have been very helpful.
A must read, especially for Hindu Savarnas.
I picked this up right after reading Ta-Nehisi Coates' "Between the World and Me". After being deeply moved by the plight of the black man, I wanted to examine something closer to home. This ...more
This book is a journey of rational arguments to counter every upholding cause for the the chaturvarna and the caste system. The world is not simply divided into those that strongly oppose caste, and those that are strongly for it. The case was not different in the early 1900's when the Hindu revolutionaries began to question the basis for their smritis and ...more
From the moment I read this book, I have been asking myself, "What makes me a Hindu?"
Passive acceptance of beliefs?
Indifference to religion?
Not following other religions?
Fearing the umpteen number of Gods/Goddesses?
Importantly, embracing the caste that I am born into?
To be absolutely honest, I do not consider myself very religious. I have not religiously studied the sacred texts such as the Vedas, Manusmritis or even the Bhagvad Gita. As a result,unlike a learned person or a ...more
Few of the (many) things I found interesting:
- Loved Ambedkar’s definition of caste in Hinduism: “Caste is like a multistoried building with no exit and no staircase. You live and die in the same floor you were born into"
- I’d read articles about how Gandhi was a lot more complex than his traditional image, but Arundhati Roy’s ...more
The abandoned speech of Dr. Ambedkar for Jat-Pat Todak Mandal made it into the powerful and well articulated book this is! The injustice, hypocrisy, and prostitution of the caste system - practiced especially by members of higher caste - is broken down to digestible ...more
The edition I review, by Verso Books, is divided into three portions — the first of which is an essay by Arundhati Roy, “The Doctor and the Saint”, which provides some background for the fundamental dispute between Ambedkar and Gandhi. In order to understand this, its useful to understand the caste system as it operated when this book was written ...more
Excellent! First the introduction by Arundhati Roy and then the last part concerning the Poona Pact by S. Anand make this book more enriched. It makes the already amazing arguments put forward by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar in ‘Annihilation of caste’ more relevant in today's context. This book has introduced me to the writings of Ambedkar and showed what an amazing human being he was and for which I’ll always be grateful. Ambedkar tried his best to bring the ‘untouchables’ to main stream of the society...more
He supports his title from all different aspects history and fall of Hinduism, economics, culture, unity and identity for Hindus, the scientific evidence against 'eugenics criterion for caste' etc. This a truly scholarly essay for every Indian to read.
Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (1891–1956)
Founding Father, Modern India
MA 1915, PhD 1927
LLD 1952 (hon.)
Ambedkar was a leader in the struggle for Indian independence, the architect of the new nation's constitution, and the champion of civil rights for the 60 million members of the "untouchable" caste, to which he belonged. He spoke and wrote ...more
But really speaking, who is better and more worthy of our respect—the Mahomedans and Christians who attempted to thrust down the throats of unwilling persons what they regarded as necessary for their salvation, or the Hindu who would not spread the light, who would endeavour to keep others in darkness, who would not consent to share his intellectual and social inheritance with those who are ready and willing to make it a part of their own make-up?
I have no hesitation in saying that if the Mahomedan has been cruel, the Hindu has been mean; and meanness is worse than cruelty.”