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Ants among Elephants: An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India Hardcover – 13 Dec 2017
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About the Author
Sujatha Gidla was born an untouchable in Andhra Pradesh, India. She studied physics at the Regional Engineering College, Warangal, and was later a researcher in applied physics at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. Her writing has appeared in The Oxford India Anthology of Telugu Dalit Writing. She lives in New York and works as a conductor on the subway.
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The novel is also very well written.
I now understand in ways that I had never done before. Just because, a Dalit has a respectable job, doesn't mean his life of humiliation is over. There are many social barriers he has to cross as a Dalit to join the mainstream.
As someone, who didn't knows his caste growing up, I understand how this ignorance is itself a form of privilege of being upper-caste.
Miss Gidla's writing has a forcefullness which made my eyes stick to the page, however much I wanted to drag them away. The revulsion invoked by her description of certain incidents was at times so overwhelmingly debilitating, it was all I could do not to weep. This book is life-changing for the urban so-called "upper-caste" folk who deny casteism exists and that by abolishing untouchabikit we have rid the country of casteism.
Read it to take a look at how caste haunts you through life, if you're a Dalit.
What book lacks is the personal experiences of the author and how she went from an detained student in police station under serious charges to her completion of studies in america and her working as train conductor in New York.
Loved this book and should be adorned in shelf