Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
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Ram Guha ─ Arguments with Gandhi II: Gandhi, Ambedkar and the Dalit Question

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Joukowsky Forum

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OP Jindal Lecture 

"Arguments with Gandhi II: Gandhi, Ambedkar and the Dalit Question," with historian Ram Guha.

From his earliest days as a social activist, Gandhi campaigned for the abolition of untouchability. Upper caste Hindus were appalled at his attacks on orthodoxy. They thought he was going too fast, yet the great lawyer-scholar B. R. Ambedkar, born into an Untouchable home himself, thought he was going too slow. This lecture will explore the paradoxes of Gandhi's position, and analyse the ways in which his approach diverged from that of Ambedkar. Finally, it will pose the question: while Gandhi and Ambedkar were undoubtedly political rivals in their lifetime, now, sixty years after both have passed on, should we not draw on both their legacies in the still unfinished fight against prejudice and orthodoxy?

Saxena Center for Contemporary South Asia