“Politicising the personal: Who am I, Who are ‘we’ as people?” by Sinthujan Varatharajah

We would like to share a deeply personal and beautifully written piece on caste identity by Sinthujan Varatharajah.

“What does it then mean to utter these words in public? That you are a Dalit or an inter-caste Dalit? How will it affect my parents if we choose to identify with what we were taught to deny? How will it affect the people around us? How will it affect us?”

“Piece by piece am I learning to process and share, to no more live in fear and silence. To no more deny the validity of our own voices. This is part of an ongoing journey which I share in the knowledge of the vulnerability I produce not just for myself, but also those I love the most. But our pain isn’t just ours, our experiences aren’t exclusively ours, and our stories are neither isolated events. They mirror this society and culture we cherish but hardly critique.

The struggle goes on and so does our our emancipation and liberation. This is part of my own contribution, the coming out I chose for myself.”

via: http://roundtableindia.co.in/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7530%3Apoliticising-the-personal-who-am-i-who-are-we-as-people-3&catid=119%3Afeature&Itemid=132

Sinthujan Varatharajah is a PhD candidate in Political Geography at the University College London and the Founder of Roots of Diaspora (www.facebook.com/rootsofdiaspora), a narrative project on refugees and migration of Tamils from Sri Lanka. He previously researched questions on caste in migration and diaspora for his master’s thesis at the London School of Economics and Political Science.You can follow him on Twitter @varathas

source: http://roundtableindia.co.in

“In Need of Translation: An Analysis of Sri Lankan Tamil Dalit Literature” by K. A. Geetha

“The number of Tamil Dalit writers and their literary output has increased in recent years. However, with the exception of literary works of writers like Bama, Imayam, and Sivakami, English translations of the works of other Tamil Dalit writers are very rarely available. (…) The various contexts and heterogeneous experiences of Dalit communities make their literary work a rich source of Dalit culture, tradition, and language. Heterogeneous Dalit cultures have resulted in multifarious plots and characters. To reach global audiences, literary works such as Sri Lankan Tamil Dalit literature must be translated into English”

To read the article online: http://www.ariel.ucalgary.ca/ariel/index.php/ariel/article/viewFile/4251/4022

Reference: Geetha, K.A., 2011, “In Need of Translation: An Analysis of  Sri Lankan Tamil Dalit Literature”, in ariel: a review of international english literature, Vol. 41 No. 3-4, pp. 33–44