About the Author
Dr. Vandana Pathak is Associate Professor and Former Head, Dept. of English, L.A.D. & Smt. R.P. College for Women, Nagpur.
About the Book
Dalit communities were allotted different sorts of low manual jobs in India. Some of them were so henious that they, as they became professions, made these communities “untouchable”. This was, of course, the curse of Varnashrama which did not allow an individual to relinquish his hereditary job and take up another. This was a cruel practical strategy adopted by the exponents of the so-called glorious tradition in India. This oppressive strategy created dehumanized social condition in which the Dalits were compelled to live. Dalit autobiographies document the pain, miseries, exploitation and marginalization of Dalits in India. Omprakash Walmiki’s Joothan, an elaborate illustration of these dehumanized social conditions, is perhaps, the most shocking example of the atrocities of caste-system. Joothan also reveals the author’s rebellious spirit as the new awakening dawns upon him gradually. The chapter on Jhoothan in Rubric offers an exhaustive reading of and insight into the miseries of Dalit community and efforts on part of the author to steer out of those miseries. Vasant Moon, whose contribution to the publication of Dr. Ambedkar’s Writings and Speeches is acknowledged by one and all, has written an Ambedkarite text to enhance the Dalit sensibility through his autobiography. What the readers look for into these autobiographies is the alienating impact produced by the unequal and unjust social structure which gradually converts into a powerful protest. Thus, Rubric, with its arguments, deep study and insightful analysis of Dalit autobiographies in three Indian languages remains an important landmark in the gamut of Dalit Criticism.