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Double Discrimination: Dalit Women’s Education in Modern India

October 14, 2015   ·   Posted in Recent Events
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Double Discrimination: Dalit Women’s Education in Modern India

Monday, Oct. 19, 12:30 pm


Double discrimination: Dalit Women’s Education in Modern India
Monday, October 19, 2015 – 12:30pm
Encina Hall West, Room 219
Inspired by egalitarian doctrines, the Dalit communities in India have been fighting for basic human and civic rights since the middle of the nineteenth century. In this talk, Shailaja Paik examines the struggle of Dalit women in the realm of formal education and investigates a range of interconnected social, cultural, and political questions. Drawing upon archival research and oral histories her paper breathes life into the ideas, actions, and lives of Dalit women in urban spaces of modern Maharashtra. She challenges the triumphant narrative of modern secular education and brings to light the deep dissonance between the rhetoric and practice of formal education.

Dr. Shailaja Paik is a historian of modern India with a focus on caste, gender, marginality, and difference. Her first book, Dalit Women’s Education in Modern India: Double discrimination (Routledge, 2014) is the first history of Dalit (“Untouchable”) women. It is the first major study that explores the role of secular education as a vehicle of social and political emancipation (on individual and collective levels) for Dalit women. Paik has also published several articles that focus on recovering the transformations in multiple realms of Dalit women’s lives in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Her article “Forging a New Dalit Womanhood” is forthcoming with the Journal of Women’s History.

Sponsored by the Center for South Asia; Co-Sponsored by the Program in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies & the Program in International Comparative Education