Caste today is active in three main ways. First, it is a system that regulates the distribution of material opportunity or life chances, and hence it is a source of enduring inequalities. Second, it remains one of the primary modes of political mobilisation, even though caste politics is now far more disaggregated, complex and uncertain than it used to be. Third, and perhaps most elusive, for everyone except a small upper-class, upper-caste elite caste continues to be a form of community offering a sense of kinship, belonging and identity. The contexts of caste have changed in ways that affect all three modalities. (Read More)
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