A book titled “Caste Panchayats and Caste Politics in India” by Dr. Anagha Ingole, Assistant Professor with the Department of Political Science, University of Hyderabad has been published by Palgrave Macmillan.

Dr. Anagha Ingole

About the Book :

The book refutes the dominant understanding about caste panchayats as mere dispute resolution bodies that are vestiges of the past. In tracing the long career and evolution of intra-caste governance from 300 BC to the present, it challenges several orthodoxies in the caste scholarship.

It questions the assumptions of modernization theory of caste-based political organisations when caste became a subject of study in politics in the 1960s and 70s. The book reflects on the uncomfortable question of the persistence of caste-based conservatism despite the current dominance of caste-based democratization in the Indian polity. It tries to make visible the limitations of ‘caste politics from below’, arguing for a radical re-imagination of caste as an identity that does not require a self-perpetuation of the primordial aspects of caste in order to pursue the opportunities offered by modern democracy. it argues that the polity can facilitate the empowerment of caste through the pursuit of the ameliorations on offer as well as the annihilation of caste, as eventually mutual goals.

Anagha Ingole teaches at the Department of Political Science, University of Hyderabad. She has been a Fulbright-Nehru Post-Doctoral Fellow at Columbia University New York. She started her work on caste panchayats while working with BARTI, Pune and has written on the topic since, in national and international publications. Her Areas of Specialization are International Relations, Political Thought, Religion and Caste in Indian Politics

More information about the book can be found here: