B. R. Ambedkar: Introduction, Books, Broken Men Theory and MCQ

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Introduction

  • 14 April 1891 – 6 December 1956
  • Also known as Babasaheb Ambedkar
  • Belonged to the Mahar caste (untouchable/Dalit castes in India)
  • Chief Architect of Constitution of India
  • Father of the Constitution
  • Radical view of caste system
  • Sub-altern approach
  • Critical of inequality of the caste system
  • Set up the Scheduled Caste Federation in 1942
  • Called for annihilation of caste system
  • Viewed caste system as dehumanized
  • An unequal mode of organization of social relations
  • Legislative and political measures
  • Merit based equality
  • No place for hereditary status
  • Hindu division of society or Hindu social order according to Varnas
  • Goes against Liberty, Equality and Fraternity
  • Goes against free social order

Books

  • Essays on Untouchables and Untouchability
  • The Evolution of Provincial Finance in British India
  • Who were the Shudras?
  • The Untouchables Who Were They and Why They Became Untouchables?
  • The Annihilation of Caste (1936)
  • Christophe Jaffrelot – “Ambedkar and Untouchability,” 2004

4 tools adopted by Ambedkar:

  • Respectable identity
  • Electoral space
  • Lifting the condition, participation
  • Convert a mass outside Hinduism

Dhamma chakra Pravartana Day is a day to celebrate the Buddhist conversion of B. R. Ambedkar and around 600,000 followers on 14 October 1956 at Deekshabhoomi.

Broken Men Theory

  • Defeated and weak lot in the society
  • Refused to accept domination of Brahmins
  • Brahmins branded broken men as untouchables
  • deprived and excluded them from the society
  • allowed them to settle on the outskirts
  • Dalits of today are broken man of the past
  • Law, political power
  • Education
  • Organisation
  • Agitation
  • Self-awakening
  • Social and political awareness
  • He proposed for abolition of religion
  • Selection on the basis of merit not on caste
  • Inter-caste marriages
  • Endogamy lead to degradation and alienation of society
  • Many provisions to uplift the conditions of scheduled castes in India in the constitution of India
  • Reservation based positive discrimination
  • Fundamental rights prohibiting untouchability
  • Disassociation from dominant castes
  • Disagreed from Gandhian view (utopian)

MCQ

Q. 1. B. R. Ambedkar՚s work focuses on:

a) Cultural Diversity

b) Social Justice

c) Purity and Pollution

d) Freedom Movement

Ans: b

Q. 2. Who laid emphasis on horizontal mobilization of the scheduled castes and made them a political force to reckon with?

(a) M. K. Gandhi

(b) B. R. Ambedkar

(c) Jyotiba Phule

(d) Narayana Guru

Ans. (b)

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