The Political Philosophies of Antonio Gramsci and B. R. Ambedkar: Itineraries of Dalits and Subalterns, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Political Philosophies of Antonio Gramsci and B. R. Ambedkar

Itineraries of Dalits and Subalterns, 1st Edition

Edited by Cosimo Zene


242 pages

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Bridging two generations of scholarship on social inequality and modern political forms, this book examines the political philosophies of inclusion of subalterns/Dalits in Gramsci and Ambedkar’s political philosophies. It highlights the full range of Gramsci’s ‘philosophy of praxis’ and presents a more critical appreciation of his thought in the study of South Asian societies. Equally, Ambedkar’s thought and philosophy is put to the forefront and acquires a prominence in the international context.

Overcoming geographical, cultural and disciplinary boundaries, the book gives relevance to the subalterns. Following the lead of Gramsci and Ambedkar, the contributors are committed, apart from underscoring the historical roots of subalternity, to uncovering the subalterns’ presence in social, economic, cultural, educational, literary, legal and religious grounds. The book offers a renewed critical approach to Gramsci and Ambedkar and expands on their findings in order to offer a present-day political focus into one of the most crucial themes of contemporary society.

This book is of interest to an interdisciplinary audience, including political theory, post-colonial studies, subaltern studies, comparative political philosophy, Dalit studies, cultural studies, South Asian studies and the study of religions.

Table of Contents

1. Subalterns and Dalits in Gramsci and Ambedkar: A prologue to a ‘posthumous’ dialogue Cosimo Zene Part 1: The Emergence of Subaltern/Dalit Subjectivity and Historical Agency 2. Subaltern Social Groups in Antonio Gramsci’s Prison Notebooks Joseph A. Buttigieg 3. Revisiting Interwar Thought: Stigma, Labor, and the Immanence of Caste-Class Anupama Rao 4. The Other Prince: Ambedkar, Constitutional Democracy, and the Agency of the Law Jon Soske Part 2: The Function of Intellectuals 5. Notes on Q6§32: Gramsci and the Dalits Roberto Dainotto 6. Limits of the Organic Intellectual: a Gramscian reading of Ambedkar Gopal Guru Part 3: Subalternity and Common Sense 7. Living Subalternity: Antonio Gramsci’s Concept of Common Sense Kate Crehan 8. Race, Class, & Religion: Gramsci’s Conception of Subalternity Marcus E. Green 9. The Risorgimento and its Discontents. Gramsci’s Reflections on Conflict and Control in the Aftermath of Italy’s Unification Alessandro Carlucci Part 4: Dalit Literature, Subalternity and Consciousness 10. Hegemony and Consciousness - building Processes in Dalit Literature Mauro Pala 11. Consciousness, Agency and Humiliation: Reflections on Dalit Life Writing and Subalternity Udaya Kumar Part 5: The Religion of the Subalterns/Dalits 12. Why does religion matter to politics? Truth and ideology in a Gramscian approach Fabio Frosini 13. Intellectuals and Subalterns in the Context of Religion Derek Boothman 14. The Place of ‘Practical Spirituality’ in the Lives of the Dalit Buddhists in Pune Tamsin Bradley and Zara Bhatewara 15. Conclusion: Which Itineraries for Dalits, Subalterns and Intellectuals? Cosimo Zene

About the Editor

Cosimo Zene is Head of Department in the Study of Religions Department at SOAS, University of London, UK. His publications include The Rishi of Bangladesh, (2002, Routledge), and a special issue of Culture and Religion on 'Religion in Gramsci' (forthcoming, Taylor & Francis).

About the Series

Routledge Advances in South Asian Studies

South Asia, with its burgeoning, ethnically diverse population, soaring economies, and nuclear weapons, is an increasingly important region in the global context. The series, which builds on this complex, dynamic and volatile area, features innovative and original research on the region as a whole or on the countries. Its scope extends to scholarly works drawing on history, politics, development studies, sociology and economics of individual countries from the region as well those that take an interdisciplinary and comparative approach to the area as a whole or to a comparison of two or more countries from this region. In terms of theory and method, rather than basing itself on any one orthodoxy, the series draws broadly on the insights germane to area studies, as well as the tool kit of the social sciences in general, emphasizing comparison, the analysis of the structure and processes, and the application of qualitative and quantitative methods. The series welcomes submissions from established authors in the field as well as from young authors who have recently completed their doctoral dissertations.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General