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The Individual and Society by Department Delhi Department of English University of Delhi

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Joothan

Omprakash Valmiki

Omprakash Valmiki’s Joothan is an autobiographical account of his experience of growing up in a village near Muzzafarnagar in UP as an untouchable or Dalit in the newly independent India of the 1950s. An engineer by profession, Valmiki began writing this memoir in 1974. Apart from Joothan, he has to his credit two anthologies of short stories, Salam and Guspathiye and three anthologies of poetry, Sadiyon Ka Santaap (1989), Bas Ab Bahut Ho Chuka (1997) and Ab Aur Nahin (2003). Now a middle class intellectual, he deliberately uses the name Valmiki as a mark of identification with his roots and also with the larger community of the sweeper caste (variously called Bhangi, Chura, Chuhra in different regions of the north), ...

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