- Mapping the Margins: An Interview with Meena Kandasamy: Conducted at Sacred Heart College in Kochi, India on 12 November 2015
- ariel: A Review of International English Literature
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 49, Number 1, January 2018
- pp. 143-154
- View Citation
- Additional Information
Caste-based discrimination is a grotesque socio-political reality in India. The term "Dalit" (or "untouchable") refers to a person belonging to the lowest caste in the traditional Indian caste system. Inspired by B. R. Ambedkar, a Western-educated intellectual and the chief architect of the Indian constitution, Dalit writers have produced stories of resistance, stories of caste discrimination and social ostracization, and alternative and parallel visions of casteless societies. As an author of contemporary Dalit writings, Meena Kandasamy describes a broad spectrum of Dalit experiences, and she voices concerns that are often unarticulated in the mainstream Indian literary canon. In so doing, Kandasamy not only helps to interpret the reality confronting Dalits but also reclaims their lost voices and identity. In conversation, Kandasamy speaks very much the way she writes—with bluntness and warmth.