Sanjay Srivastava | Work, youth culture and the meanings of ‘caste politics’ in Kerala

Lecture | November 15 | 3-5 p.m. | Stephens Hall, 10 (ISAS Conf. Room)

 Sanjay Srivastava, Professor of Sociology, Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi

 Lawrence Cohen, Professor in Anthropology and South and Southeast Asian Studies and the co-director of the Medical Anthropology Program

 Institute for South Asia Studies, Sarah Kailath Chair of India Studies

Join us for a lecture by Sociologist, Prof. Sanjay Srivastava.

How do young people in Kerala from Dalit and other non-upper caste backgrounds imagine the politics of caste at a time new consumer cultures and complex aspirations regarding social mobility? The Centre for Research, Education and Social transformation (CREST) is a state funded organisation that trains Dalit and other marginalised youth in a variety of ‘soft skills’ to enable them to find jobs in the private sector. The students’ stay at CREST is also a period of reflection about the meaning and experience of caste and Dalit identity. However, this doesn’t necessarily translate into any straightforward ‘caste consciousness’ and a politics of the oppressed. What is the contemporary Dalit subject in a state that is frequently characterised as a ‘casteless’ one? And, how does one understand the process of transformation that a training in ‘soft skills’ is intended to produce?

About the Speaker
Sanjay Srivastava is Professor of Sociology at the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi. His publications include Constructing Post-colonial India: National Character and the Doon School (Routledge, 1998); Passionate Modernity, Sexuality, Class and Consumption in India (Routledge, 2007); Sexuality Studies (OUP, 2013); Entangled Urbanism: Slum, Gated Community and Shopping Mall in Delhi and Gurgaon (OUP, 2015); and Critical Theme in Indian Sociology (SAGE, 2019, co-editor). His co-edited volume, (Hi)stories of Desire: Sexualities and Culture in Modern India is forthcoming with Cambridge University Press. Prof. Srivastava's current research focuses on urban cultures and changing identities in the context of new forms of work. In February 2020, he will take up the position of British Academy Global Professor at University College London.

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Event made possible with the support of the Sarah Kailath Chair of India Studies

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The event is FREE and OPEN to the public.

 isas@berkeley.edu, 510-642-3608