THE LITERARY HERALD AN INTERNATIONAL REFEREED ENGLISH E-JOURNAL Transforming Pain into Resistance : Dalit Autobiographies Transforming Pain into Resistance: Dalit Autobiographies
An International Refereed English e-Journal
In the postmodern era plurality of cultures, genders and ethnicities is established with the argument that no particular type should be privileged over others. There should be an equal representation for each class, caste, gender, race and culture. In other words, every literature, especially English literature, hitherto considered hidebound and insular discipline has to articulate the feelings, aspirations, pains and sensibilities of all dispossessed tribes across the globe who have been
... who have been described by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak as the 'Fourth World'. The impact of these ideologies and the expansion of knowledge helped in the blossoming of Dalit literature in all Indian languages. Dalit literature empowers the marginalized by retrieving the voices, spaces and identities silenced or suppressed by casteist powers. It is a revolt against dominant ideology and cultural hegemony. Dalit writers have taken to writing autobiography for they see it as the most potent weapon to portray the dreadful and humiliating events of a Dalit's world and thus to dismantle the caste-system responsible for their untouchable status and to rebuild society on the principles of human dignity, equality and respect. Subjectivity in these autobiographies is complicated by the deep connection between the individual self and the communal self. My paper attempts to explore Dali autobiographies as "narratives of pain" that bind Dalits together into an "imagined community" of fellow sufferers and transform experiences of pain into narratives of resistance.