The Cyber Dalit

 

A paper presented Muhammad Ashraf T at Osmnani University, brings about some interesting insights about the new technological world of cyberspace and what it means to the Dalits.

 

The study provides primary information about Dalit cyberspace in India and especially in Kerala. Dalits have no traditional media and they are not represented properly in mainstream media. New media provided many opportunities to express their thoughts and ideas effectively.

 

The findings from a survey of various Dalit websites revealed that:

 

  • The Dalit websites in India have some major characteristics and they empower Dalit life through cyber interventions
  • They re-read the history of India in a subaltern perspective. Thus the ycreate a new methodology of historiography. They compare caste system to slavery.
  • They present anti upper caste concepts and criticize Savarna ideology.
  • Through Internet Dalits can be a pan Indian community
  • Ambedkar is an icon of websites and they conceive him as the prophet of Dalits.
  • They attract the attention of global discourse on discrimination, racism, apartheid and untouchability.
  • They create a counter public which differs from main stream.
  • They disseminate radical thoughts on politics, history and culture.
  • They create a culture of dissent.
  • They provide links of international websites which deal with racismand discrimination
    They create a virtual community which is also known as communityof interest.
  • They help Dalits achieve global visibility.
  • They lead Dalits to the global historical narration of oppression.
  • They keep harmony with other scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and minorities.
  • They function as an alternative media to mainstream or traditionalmedia.
  • As new media Dalit websites make a community of specific interests
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