Caste and Exploitation in Indian History

By Dr. Bharat Patankar

(translated by Gail Omvedt)

                                            Part I

Introduction: The Process of Exploitation

Exploitation arising from the caste hierarchy is a particular feature of the South Asian subcontinent.  There was no such exploitative system in other continents or in countries outside of South Asia.   But since caste exploitation has been a reality for 1500-2000 years this shakes the belief that only class can be the basis of exploitation.  And because of this we have to transcend the attempt to find a way only pragmatically and deal with the issue on a philosophical and theoretical level.   Class has been theorized extensively in terms of exploitation; to some extent gender also, but not caste. Exploitation as women in various forms has also…

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