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Globalization and the Politics of Identity in India by Ronki Ram, Ashutosh Kumar, Bhupinder Brar

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8

‘Mool/Asli’ Backward Classes and the Politics of Recognition in Rajasthan*

JAGPAL SINGH

INTRODUCTION

This essay is about the politics of recognition with reference to low castes other than the dalits, who are generally known as the Most Backward Classes (MBCs), and prefer to be addressed as the mool or the Real/Original Backward Classes in Rajasthan. It argues that contrary to the popular understanding, the MBCs do not always imitate the high castes through hegemonizing processes like sanskritization. Their quest for recognition leads them to take recourse to various alternative ways—setting up social, cultural and political organizations; critiquing past leaderships of their respective castes; constructing their histories, pantheons/heroes/icons; ...

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