Universität Bonn

Abteilung für Südasienstudien

Social Activism as Narrative Strategy: Text and Subtext in Hindi Dalit Autobiographies

Research conducted by Marina Rimscha

The genre of autobiography occupies a special place in the sphere of Hindi Dalit literature for Dalit autobiographies have been widely praised as authentic documents of Dalit experience and studied for their socio-political significance. However, research on the subject has been largely focused on content analysis, whereas an analysis of form has rarely been in the foreground. In my dissertation, I analyse the narrative strategies and techniques that are used to perform their identity by three well-known Hindi Dalit authors—Omprakash Valmiki, Kausalya Baisantri and Tulsi Ram—in their respective autobiographies Jūṭhan, Dohrā Abhiśāp and the two-part autobiography Murdahiyā and Maṇikarṇikā.

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