Do caste names propagate the caste divide?
#13
Related discussion from Facebook Group:

Kiran Trivedi
Quote:I never liked the practice of adding 'bahen' while adressing women (Ashabahen, Gitabahen) or 'bhai' to men (Amitbhai). One reason I could find is, these adressing are 'gender specific' and I don't like even this small a gender bias. That's why I prefer adressing people either just by name or by adding 'Ji' with name, which is a gender neutral adress. Most damning thing is, make women use 'Kumari' or 'Shreemati' with their names according to their marital status. Its like binding them in chains.

Kiran Trivedi
Quote:We rationalist friends often discuss about dropping the caste indicating surnames. Like Trivedi is brahmin, Mehta is baniya etc. 'what alternatives can be developed to use with names'? Because keeping just names may prove confusing. There could be thousands of Kirans, but some less Kiran Trivedis; that's how these surnames have become useful and stayed.

In North Indian states, there were several movements in this directiuon. Many people have dropped their surnames like Yadav, Gupta and Sharma and adopted 'Kumar'. Bihar CM Nitish Kumar is one such example. Then there were people who tried using meaningful words they would like to be associated with. Like Kiran Sceptic or Kiran Vishwabandhu etc. Also some dropped surname but kept father's name, like Kiran Lalbhai, Dilip Chandulal.

But somehow, nothing has worked that well and become acceptable to larger section of rational/progressive society. Have you any suggestion or interesting things to share?

Usama Syed
Quote:dropping/changing caste surnames sounds like a whole lotta effort spent. and spent on curing symptoms, not the disease, no?

Lalit Mohan Chawla
Quote: very interesting topic, http://nirmukta.net/Thread-Do-caste-name...ste-divide

Pravin Sharma
Quote:Related link: http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/article445810.ece
The agony & the ajaat

Kanad Kanhere
Quote:I agree with Usama Syed. This seems to be a workaround rather than a solution. Article mentioned by Pravin Sharma is a good evidence to that where the "Ajaat" started being treated as a new caste. Other place where such approach seems to have failed is refraining the use of "black" and replace it with "african-americans". I think this has hardly achieved anything against racism

Lalit Mohan Chawla
Quote:^exactly

Lalit Mohan Chawla
Quote:also quoting arvind from the forum thread
"This is a dicey issue. We may get rid of 'surnames' or 'last names' but often due to cultural reasons, castes can be discerned from first-names as well! So the long-term solution is to defang all names rather than merely truncate them. Last names are common in America but they are simply strings to be spelt rather than surreptitious declarations of ancestral professions. A grown-up society will know better than to read too much into last names. During intermediate stages in this process of growing-up, last names maybe useful for one reason: to convey that the accident of birth that led to a certain name being affixed on us does not in any way prevent us from being freethinkers. There is too much real work to do in freethought promotion, than to get entangled in a mess of red-tape, affidavits and announcements to truncate names.
"

Bhole Vishwakarma
Quote:I lived in Surat for 6 years and non gujarati would joke that if everyone is 'bhai' & 'ben'...then how do they reproduce.smile

Ajita Kamal
Quote:Sometimes temporary workarounds are well worth it in individual cases when long-term solutions are in the academic discussion stage. For a Dalit who is currently being discriminated because of her name, the obligations of building a grown up society are secondary to the "symptoms" that are very real to her. In such cases it is difficult to brush aside attempts to change surnames or to omit the last name altogether, which some people seem to find benefit in doing as evidenced in this article posted originally by Sanjay Kumar which I reposted on the forums: http://www.thaindian.com/newsportal/unca...48626.html

Narendra Nayak
Quote:@ Ajita- just getting your caste name deleted will not ensure that your caste is forgotten!I have eliminated my family name from my name to spare them have the embarrassment of having a professed atheist in their family. But people of the caste into which I was born still refer to me as a member of that family whose name carries no meaning for others! My ancestors long back changed the spelling of the surname because the original spelling Naik was common with that of 'shudras' an dalits! However, they might not have been that well informed that the newer spelling too is shared by many 'lower castes' including SCs and STs. That is one reason why I did not have to take all the toruble of changing my surname. However, even if one changes ones surname the s/o cannot be changed as that is pertaining to some one else who may be dead!

Ajita Kamal
Quote:‎Prof. Nayak, I completely agree with that. I am not arguing that if you get rid of your caste name everything will be forgotten. I am well aware of how entrenched the whole system is. All I am saying is that there are cases where it helps people to give up their caste name, and we should not be objecting to those.

Kanad Kanhere
Quote:‎Ajita Kamal - kind of agree with you, but the efficacy of such workarounds itself is in question based on the article about "ajaat" approach and racism. The article that you mentioned, if I didn't miss something, seems to elicit the experience of people in trying to adopt this approach rather than the constructive effects it caused

Ajita Kamal
Quote:Kanad, the article I posted was not meant as evidence for the efficacy of such a strategy, just an indication that it is sometimes adopted. The efficacy itself will have to be judged on a case by case basis. But even if neither of us has any evidence, we can make some informed inferences.

An example I often bring up when it comes to caste-related surnames and discrimination are studies that show that EVEN IN THE CITIES there is discrimination against people with "low caste" surnames when job applications are submitted (for identical qualifications- this is also true for Muslim names). Now, consider a person from a village where he/she is discriminated. He/she could study themselves into a good life, but still face discrimination in a city thousands of kilometers away, because of the surname. In such a case, would it not benefit them to pick a caste-neutral surname?

The article had a line that startled me:
“Most people of my generation from Bihar grew up without a surname because our parents thought better of it due to all the Mandal Commission things happening.”

There isn't a whole lot of literature on this issue, but apparently in some communities such things are common, (at least they were in the 80s and 90s). One likely reason is that most of those who are in positions of privilege with the ability to make such issues well publicized, are the ones benefitting from the status quo. Again, let me stress that this is not a solution to the problem of caste- far from it, it is nothing more than avoidance of the real issues. But that is a "just world" point of view well worth endorsing by those of us who can avail of such luxuries as fighting the system from the outside, but I do not think can fairly ask those who feel they can benefit from shedding surnames with repressive baggage to live their lives by such ideals.

Udhav Naig
Quote://////////My ancestors long back changed the spelling of the surname because the original spelling Naik was common with that of 'shudras' an dalits!/////////////

This is precisely why my surname Naik was changed to Naig. Apparently, to make a distinction between "others" and the family of ministers (Naigs) of King Sarabhoji.

Bharathi Kp
Quote: I appreciate using Ms. for women and not Miss. or Mrs. But many refuse to follow that in addressing. For example in Hospitals you are supposed to enter the marital status and husband's name. After that even if you spell your name properly, the initials are changed and address carries a 'w/o' tag. I am bugged up with dealing this.

Narendra Nayak
Quote:@ Bharathi- the same for the fathers name one of of my friends whose father had abandoned his mother did not want to put his fathers name so he would just s/o of X.Y.Z when some one wanted to put s/o and those were his mothers initials. The last part was the surname which he used to expand.

Kiran Trivedi
Quote:Thanks friends, you have provided a lot of material to expand a debate on that we will be having in Gujarat soon.
I personally feel trapped in this surname issue. Seems it won't be possible to remove castiest surnames until we can actually remove castes. We cant assume that it doesn't matter, as it does to a large chunk of society. From all the options available, using one's own name with an option to use father's or mother's, seems to be workable. Though it is half the bettle, as somebody indicated above that people can makeout the caste/community from name as well.

A couple, who wanted to affect some such change tried this : man was Balachandran, lady was Manvita (Keralian + Gujarati), at the time of school admission, they had to have some surname!! They opted for 'ManBaal'. Now they keep answering what is that???

Usama Syed
Quote:anecdote. a bar one, at that. (scientific, no?)

my first month in india, some drunk guy was trying to convince me about the difference in our caste-roots based on respective facial features (yes, really). can't really change those now, can we? just a nose jobs runs what, a few ten-thousand rupees? c'est la trop fail.

Sanjay Kumar
Quote:i have joined the party late here...my 2 cents is this: in TN after Periyar's call for not using caste names as surnames there has been no use of surnames with casteist connotations for almost 50-60 years...has it changed the ground realities on caste identities...no, but atleast a first step towards that goal has already been undertaken...i think much of our initial/baby steps towards a larger social goal involved often invariably with cosmetic beginnings. I liked this article for the comparison of TN and UP and the underlying caste politics between the two:http://vikramvgarg.wordpress.com/2008/08/09/can-uttar-pradesh-catch-up-with-tamil-nadu/

Sanjay Kumar
Quote:So was this article:http://www.outlookindia.com/article.aspx?277988 although the earlier article does not correlate the no caste names society of TN with low caste crimes compared to UP...but a positive correlation could be made if sufficient data is available to that effect IMO. My conclusion is this;as Ajita pointed out earlier a mere dropping of caste names may not be a tangible soultion to caste politics of our country, but in more ways than one it is a starting point...

Narendra Nayak
Quote:@ Ajita- Going further, in our area some have got around caste names by putting the place name or the name of the locality. The so called 'lower castes' have done that here. But, the locals have got around that too. the moment If I say my name is Narendra Mangalore they will ask the fathers name, mothers name etc. to dig up more and ultimately get the caste!While I am fully in support of those who do not want their caste names to be a burden on them I am pointing out what I have observed about that so that others can know about past cases.

Fani Raj Mani Chandan
Quote:I myself have faced such question because I don't use my cast title as surname but last word of my name. Now I don't face such questions anymore. Generally people either don't dare to ask this question or if they do, I don't answer it. However I've faced this caste-ist mentality when I applied for my passport (though it save me from some trouble). The police officer who came for the verification was a brahmin and was a very rude old man. He had already kept one person in waiting for the same since last two hours and was going through my application and documents where he observed "Sharma" as my father's last name. Suddenly his behavior was changed, he asked "Oh! you are brahmin, good". And he sent OK in the report of verification.

There were other cases in schooldays when some teachers (specially upper cast) use to ask the surname to students who had dropped the surname from their names. Questions like
- Kaa Naam hai? (what is your name?)
- Amit Kumar
- Amit Kumar kaa? chamaar? dusaadh? ahir? laaj aata hai baap ka naam lagaane me? (Amit Kumar what? chamaar? dusaadh? ahir (some dalit castes)? Are you ashamed of your your father's name (caste)?

Yes, dropping surname does not solve the problem as the caste can still be identified by your father's name or some other way. But I am certain that my son's caste name won't be that easy to identify.

Sunil Choudhary
Quote:some people say traditions are important. I say some traditions are unnecessary, so get rid of them. Evolve.

Ravi Saklani
Quote:As far as surname is concern dey r identity of a person n 1 shld not feel ashamed of his identity how r u suppose 2 fight against all dis discrimination if u urself feels ashamed on ur cast n ur identity
about an hour ago via mobile · Like

Sunil Choudhary
Quote:english please.

Ravi Saklani
Quote:Plz specify which english? Do u want bhojpuri angreji

Usama Syed
Quote:‎"The rest of the mistake-makers, whether from errant typos or genuine disinterest in written English, are no less smart than you are. They are perhaps, if anything, just a bit more economical with their time–in that they’re not wasting it, serving as the traffic cops of the internet, doling out bullshit tickets." http://thoughtcatalog.com/2011/a-humble-...mar-nazis/

Ajita Kamal
Quote:Sunil, I agree with and will stress the nuance in your comment. "I say SOME traditions are unnecessary, so get rid of them", capitalized emphasis mine. I know exactly what you mean, but I know from experience how such nuance is often missed and misinterpreted.
Fani, a while ago someone started a discussion on baby names for us freethinkers: http://nirmukta.net/Thread-Naming-the-kids
I'm not a dad yet, but I am completely in agreement with you on one thing- no one will be able to tell jack shit about caste from my kid's name, unless my partner is reeeaallly persuasive. And I wouldn't want her to take my last name either, not would I hers.

Fani Raj Mani Chandan
Quote:^I have the same view

Sunil Choudhary
Quote:agree
"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
[+] 1 user Likes Ajita Kamal's post
Reply
#14
I am reviving this thread after a heated discussion in the Chennai Freethinkers' group about retaining caste identity in our names. The reactions have been violent and emotional. And so my question is this:
What does it mean to have a caste suffixed to your name? How do people see you? Even if you deny your caste privilege and take the caste name only as an identity or a matter of conveniencce, would people understand? Is there any significance to dropping caste identity from our names?
[+] 1 user Likes geetha's post
Reply
#15
Quote:What does it mean to have a caste suffixed to your name? How do people see you? Even if you deny your caste privilege and take the caste name only as an identity or a matter of conveniencce, would people understand?
It depends on the people. I have never been attacked so vehemently for no reason other than having a particular last name as I have recently in Chennai Freethinkers. My time in Tamil Nadu has never exceeded more than a month's stays and I have never had troubles. No one bothered me, no one harassed me, no ever demanded I change my name, etc.
Back in the day in some Yahoo groups supporting affirmative action, my last name wasn't visible but I did disclose that I came from a Brahmin family. That did evoke some really sexist attacks and I finally left the Yahoo group, but it seemed it was also because I wasn't responding to some flirting that was coming my way. I was deemed too casteist for not wanting to flirt, go figure. This was some time in 2004-2005 if memory serves well. I chalked it off to people being cyber despos.

Personally, I think dropping caste names does very little and it seems to be sort of a slacktivist thing to do--especially since Tamil culture never has had a last name/surname system the way the Western world has (and since 19th century, North India has too). It isn't revolutionary and I find it a form of caste privilege denial. I also notice this seems to be far more acceptable for non-Brahmins to have caste specific last names, which IMO contradicts the entire purpose of shunning names like Iyer. Upper/middle castes still seem to dominate the upper echelons of society, Dalits are still at the bottom and caste violence in Tamil Nadu is only a bit better than the notorious UP/Bihar belt.
Reply
#16
[quote='Gayaisbrown' pid='7388' dateline='1349667715']
//////It isn't revolutionary and I find it a form of caste privilege denial./////

What privilege does it deny???? Doesn't shedding the caste name a revolutionary thing to do??? How do you say that?? None advocates a change expecting it to be a revolutionary one. Certainly there was dire need for such act in those days.

/////I also notice this seems to be far more acceptable for non-Brahmins to have caste specific last names, which IMO contradicts the entire purpose of shunning names like Iyer./////

Who said non-brahmins are having caste specific last names??? What are they give me some exampels. I didn't come across any of that sort so far as I come across Iyer and Iyengar...

///////Upper/middle castes still seem to dominate the upper echelons of society, Dalits are still at the bottom and caste violence in Tamil Nadu is only a bit better than the notorious UP/Bihar belt. /////

You should understand socio-economy of Tamil Nadu before giving your opinion or generalised statements. Just having few months visits to TN doesn't bring enough knowledge to argue about TN.

There are chances of clashes is more between certain Middle castes and Dalits, because they fall in same economic status, compete for livelihoods, shares same levels of illiteracy rate or rural background. Which makes the chances of clashes far more higher between certain middle castes and dalits. For which caste system acts as an excuse to oppress Dalits. Other than that the middle level castes who are landlords in TN are not encountered with casteist clash with Dalits, because there is no competition for livelihood between them.

But when you compare this status with other states its completely different. You are very eager to whitewash Periyar's movement didnt being any change in TN, but the reality TN ranks first in the affirmative actions all over India. Go and check statistics from SC-ST education statistics with Central government. Here in TN you could see higher number of Dalit and BC students competing with other students in open quota itself. Its because peoplewhere able to cross caste barriors atleast to an extant.

Its better to accept the caste names will lead to favouritism.... Removing caste name is just a first step towards egaliterian society, first step is never a last where we see complete change.

Reply
#17
Quote:What privilege does it deny????

You think my caste privilege vanishes if I change my last name from Iyer to my husband's last name, which is Brown?
Nope. I still get the perks of being an upper caste person, especially if I lived in India.

So yes, removing last name and claiming to be rid of caste privilege is a bogus logic. It makes people feel great for doing something that costs them nothing.

Quote:Doesn't shedding the caste name a revolutionary thing to do??? How do you say that??
It isn't in Tamil/South Indian culture because the concept of last names didn't exist in Indian society till about the 17th/18th century; it mostly coincided with British census taking where village or caste name would be taken into consideration.


Quote:None advocates a change expecting it to be a revolutionary one. Certainly there was dire need for such act in those days.
There was also a dire need in "those" days and in this day to drop religion based names, given this:

http://ibnlive.in.com/news/caste-and-fai...259-3.html

http://infochangeindia.org/human-rights/...india.html

Why is there no push or zeal towards ridding ourselves of religion based names, the way there is towards Brahmin last names?

Quote:Who said non-brahmins are having caste specific last names??? What are they give me some exampels.I didn't come across any of that sort so far as I come across Iyer and Iyengar...

Mudaliar, Chettiar, Nadar, Gounder, Thevar, Pillai, etc. Don't bother pretending that these aren't common. And are you proposing that Dalits not use their Dalit last names? Who gave you the right to tell oppressed groups how they define their names?

Quote:You should understand socio-economy of Tamil Nadu before giving your opinion or generalised statements. Just having few months visits to TN doesn't bring enough knowledge to argue about TN.
One doesn't have to visit a place to know the institutional effect of caste and glean reports and statistical figures of how different castes fare within the system.
http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-...475210.ece

Read this book for a detailed analysis, certain "backward castes" actually hold much of the land, money, political power and general system control. They are the new "Brahmins", so to speak:http://books.google.com/books/about/Caste_violence_in_Tamil_Nadu.html?id=3OJtAAAAMAAJ


And there's more, if anyone has the appetite.

http://www.epw.in/editorials/tamil-nadu-...lence.html

http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,,H...3f0,0.html

http://www.hrw.org/node/24485/section/8

Caste and Panchayat in Tamil Nadu

Nadar Hegemony

http://www.countercurrents.org/teltumbde301011.htm

{{"However, the Justice Party ministry’s idea of nonbrahmin
welfare did not include all nonbrahmin castes. This category
practically excluded dalits and other religious minorities. Even
among nondalit nonbrahmins, only the minority ‘high’ nonbrahmin
castes—reddiars, naickers, mudaliars, vellalars, chettiars—benefited.
The composition of the first Justice Party ministry in 1920 reflected
this social reality.....The BCs, who were already in a powerful position, received a
shot in the arm thanks to the struggle of the vanniyars and the
reservation gains made by the MBCs, and to the implementation of
the Mandal Commission report in 1990. The nonbrahmin, nondalit
bloc became even more powerful. This completes the picture of
the accumulation of power by the caste majority. The dalits faced
these political circumstances with the political and symbolic power
derived from the Ambedkar centenary year celebrations (1991) that
accompanied these developments. The qualitative changes in
violence against dalits after the 1990s must be understood against
this background.
The fact of political power in Tamil Nadu resting with the caste
majority facilitates the exercise of both societal violence and state
violence against dalits."
http://navayana.org/wp-content/uploads/2...xcerpt.pdf}}


Quote:There are chances of clashes is more between certain Middle castes and Dalits, because they fall in same economic status, compete for livelihoods, shares same levels of illiteracy rate or rural background. Which makes the chances of clashes far more higher between certain middle castes and dalits. For which caste system acts as an excuse to oppress Dalits. Other than that the middle level castes who are landlords in TN are not encountered with casteist clash with Dalits, because there is no competition for livelihood between them.

No, they do not compete for livelihoods, nor share the same economic status or illiteracy levels. In fact, land owning middle castes categorized as BC/OBC and even some classified as SC are some of the *worst* perpetrators of casteist violence. Refer above in the sources cited to the numerous instances and the political subversion of power.


Quote: But when you compare this status with other states its completely different. You are very eager to whitewash Periyar's movement didnt being any change in TN, but the reality TN ranks first in the affirmative actions all over India.
How much Dalit representation is there in the power structure? Why is Tamil Nadu second to Bihar in caste violence that includes pillage, murders, rapes and chattel slavery?
Affirmative action that benefits the middle castes while still keeping a majority of Dalits out of the education and government institutions isn't all that helpful.


Quote: Go and check statistics from SC-ST education statistics with Central government. Here in TN you could see higher number of Dalit and BC students competing with other students in open quota itself. Its because peoplewhere able to cross caste barriors atleast to an extant. /

Citations please.

Quote:Its better to accept the caste names will lead to favouritism.... Removing caste name is just a first step towards egaliterian society, first step is never a last where we see complete change.

Give me one instance of a society where tribalism/casteism died off or became weak because people decided to change their names. Besides, people identify castes well beyond someone's last name. Where you are from, what dialect you speak, what you eat, sometimes even how you look/dress, your first name even--can and does give out your caste.
It also seems to me that if I were to live in Tamil Nadu, having the last name Iyer or Iyengar is far more disadvantageous than having a generic Hindu last name--as people seem to have some real antipathy against anyone with the last name Iyer/Iyengar.

The biggest effect in terms of name change seems to come from changing one's religion based, rather than caste based name. This is true not just for all over India, but also Tamil Nadu. Given that fact, are you admitting that we ought to privilege caste over religion?
[+] 2 users Like Gayaisbrown's post
Reply
#18
[quote='Gayaisbrown' pid='7395' dateline='1349768020']
[quote]You think my caste privilege vanishes if I change my last name from Iyer to my husband's last name, which is Brown?
Nope. I still get the perks of being an upper caste person, especially if I lived in India. [/quote]

Come on, in social engineering just a single curative act won't vanish the rotten sydrome or disease one has. Avoiding caste name from public display will avoid certain types of privileges you get by displaying it publicly-. The main idea behind framing such a cultural system is to avoid the biases and undue privileges specifically associated with this public display of caste names. For example, if a person has his caste name in public display, the teachers in school would find it 99% easier to group people and do favouritism according to their caste interests. If caste names are avoid from using publicly would such a easy nepotism be possible that easily???. Like this we can give n number of examples.

[quote]So yes, removing last name and claiming to be rid of caste privilege is a bogus logic. It makes people feel great for doing something that costs them nothing.[/quote]

What I like to say is that, the way you stress its a bogus logic is itself showing how much hatred you do have towards, people who advocated this act of doing away with caste names. Can I suspect that you hate dravidian/Self-respect movement to the core???? Weather removing the caste name does really brings in change or not, could not be quantified with absolute numbers to either speak in favor or against it. I know n number people who take huge pride in having their caste names like reddy, naidu, aiyer iyengar blah blah... Having caste names behind your name is not possible in TN because which won't be added into any of your government documents right from you Birth certificate.
Yes people feel great because, for example when caste name displayed in public, there are 99% probablity a person gets an house for rent based on the caste from a caste biased person, but when caste name is not mentioned publicly, there are relatively very less chances the house owner asks the tenant about castes, just for the sake of decency.

What you again and again argue is single prescription should cure whole disease, but cmon get to learn that caste systems are psychological diseases which finds innovative ways to keep track of caste. Our duty who wishes to bring in egalitarian social system is to encounter each and every tools which is used by caste biasers. If you want me to list the tools for caste biasers, I will try listing some,
Tools For cáste biasers- Solution to counter those tools
1. Caste name, (remove those caste name right from schools till lifelong)
2. Based on economic status and grooming, they narrow down to particular caste, (Free distribution of Uniform clothing and stationary items in schools)
3. If in case of villages, based on the street name or village name (Periyar samathuvapurams &Urban housing boards)

So like this each tool cater its own varieties of oppression. Therefore strictly encountering or suppressing one caste bias tool alone won't end the caste system completely.

Therefore your arguement removing caste names from the names doesnt bring any change is unprovable. Even I cant prove It brought in Change. But I am sure people who argue vehemently in support of retaining caste names have hidden and pervert pride in having such names, which is evident from many of my relatives and friends. I know you are exception to that, since you keep confessing that again and again. But you are serving recipe in favour of caste pride seekers, by making flawed arguments for having caste name behind.

[quote]It isn't in Tamil/South Indian culture because the concept of last names didn't exist in Indian society till about the 17th/18th century; it mostly coincided with British census taking where village or caste name would be taken into consideration.[/quote]

What ever you say I wish, you could give citation, I could see you are fond of giving citations...

Anyhow if your above statement is true, then why you get so annoyed to shed away the system which was brought in by the imperialists to divide our society.????

But according to my knowledge in epigraphy, there are enough proofs, which are inscribed in temples, quoting caste names of so and so kings or donors to the temple. So I cant believe only British brought in the system of having caste names behind. Even if Tamil chieftains were not fond of having caste names, I could see Telugu kings or caste groups who were in Tamil Nadu were fond of having the caste names as a cheap pride.

[quote]There was also a dire need in "those" days and in this day to drop religion based names, given this:[/quote]

This is such an horrible argument. This is why my reply was bit harsh today morning in chennai freethinkers facebook forum. You make such flawed and rude arguement, on top of it you are dictating rules for others. When I argue you have to do away with cancer in the society, you are counter arguing with me why you didn't do away with AIDS first of all. People who do Caste bias or religious bias they wait for none, we got to handle both of them in parallel. We need change for all kind of biases. But for religious biases the ways to tackle those biases could be discussed separately, which needs innovative solutions. I am already searching for Good non-religious names from Tamil Sangam Literatures. So therefore we need change in both. Boths caste names, which are easily shedable, because it is not given name could be removed immediately by the grown up people who wish to see egalitarian society. Removing caste names could be the foundation for an eagalitarian society, it’s certainly not complete cure. Religious meaning names are given names, which are given by ones parents from childhood. Therefore you can’t compare the given names and caste names equally when it comes to removing of names. I hope you will at least now on stop giving this as an excuse for retaining caste names. Both the evils should be eradicated, even if I couldn’t eradicate I won’t argue that there is no evil in the ill-deed which am doing by having caste name.

[quote]Why is there no push or zeal towards ridding ourselves of religion based names, the way there is towards Brahmin last names?[/quote]

If you ask me personally I have enough zeal for doing away with these religious names. If you really need proof for my zeal, I would be ready to give you from my e-mail archives of my communication with Tamil and Telugu linguists. Do you need it???

[quote]Who said non-brahmins are having caste specific last names??? What are they give me some exampels.I didn't come across any of that sort so far as I come across Iyer and Iyengar...
[/quote]

[quote]Mudaliar, Chettiar, Nadar, Gounder, Thevar, Pillai, etc. Don't bother pretending that these aren't common. And are you proposing that Dalits not use their Dalit last names? Who gave you the right to tell oppressed groups how they define their names?[/quote]

I raised that question above about caste specific last names is because i thought you are denoting something different from caste names as such when you mentioned caste specific last names. Now I understand in your writings in last post the caste names and caste specific last names are same.

And don't imagine too much I will never get bothered if you start targeting Non-brahmins, if they use their caste names in inhumane way. I have come accross many of such sorts like reddy's naidu's, Naikars, Nadars many times. There are instances, I opposed to the people who I know very well for having such practise. In facebook especially I shunned people many times for doing that. Don't think am biased towards only Brahmins and Iyangars. Iam against anyone who argues vehemently that too with fake meaningless arguements in supportof retaining caste names. Finally its everyones individual freedom to accept what periyar said or what people like us argue. But when the same person who uses the caste name comes in public and makes loose comments that removing caste names is bogus logic is unacceptable. You may not be having pervert pride when you are having caste name behind, but I know N-number of people who find pride in having caste names. Even in my family I have many. Your argument in support of retaining caste names would go in favour of people who enjoy pervert pride in retaining caste names. Its like a person who is immune to malaria is asking others who are not immune to malaria to go to malaria infected countries. You don't have pervert pride but others do. When you say having caste names is not getting me any pride at all, it is subjective argument, don't generalize it.

I was taken into the path of rationalism and self-respect movement by many ex-Iyers and Iyengars. Therefore I have all sorts of friends, who shed their caste names without any hesitation for the greater good.

[quote] And are you proposing that Dalits not use their Dalit last names? Who gave you the right to tell oppressed groups how they define their names?[/quote]
Yes am proposing, not dictating. Finally it’s the wish of individuals to have it beyond the oppositions from the peers of the society. But I don’t see any Dalits who prefer to have Dalit last names, atleast in last names. If at all present very few in number. Modern generation of Tamil Nadu is beyond the caste surnames, which is out of fashion from their birth certificate through schooldays. Many people who retain caste name in TN is either pro-hinduthva or anti-self respect movement, and now am seeing you as new variant Rationalist, who proposes “caste names are ultra harmless and removing caste names are bogus logic”. This argument could be ok for you, but don’t generalize this as the proven fact, that’s why am arguing this much. There is certainly significant positive effect of removing caste names is there in TN, this hypothesis needs thorough research with advanced social research techniques. But now with this poor understanding of dynamics and variables and tools of caste bias and pride we cant quantify it absolutely. Researches are needed. But if you ask me to make qualitative assessment of significant changes arises out of shedding caste names, I would say there is significant benefit, but that’s not the complete solution. If people are decided or prejudiced to belittle a positive change they can go to any extent to argue significant one as bogus.


[quote]One doesn't have to visit a place to know the institutional effect of caste and glean reports and statistical figures of how different castes fare within the system. [/quote]

Yes the superficial research from the internet only result in these kind flawed and arrogant arguments. One got to have exposed to the field realities to know the dynamics. I will bring out flaws in your arguement point by point.

1. You are saying, that you had gone through all these books, do show me a single statistical proof which says removing caste named didnt or did benefitted Tamil Nadu community. Or it only made fatal damage to TN. Give me an objective proof. Don't get your eyes dim by the hatred you have towards a Kannadiga/Telugu Periyar's self-respect movement in Tamil Nadu. Don't make use of that hatred to distort the image of TN and TN people. Why do some people who hate non-Tamil periyar is hating Tamil community too and bringing bad name to Tamil people and TN.
2. Some of the articles which you gave argues that Dravidian party rules didn’t alleviate TN people from the caste burden, instead middle castes are ruling the society, oppressing the dalits. I 100% agree with that article, which is very well known for people like us who were living in villages from my childhood. Which is pan India scenario, not specific to TN. I know the dynamics between each section of the society. But what is the point in bringing these proofs for the argument about the benefits of removing caste names. Caste system is carried from one generation to another generation in a multidynamic way. Among the multidynamics removing caste names is removal of single cause for discrimination. When this single cause i.e caste name is absent, people make use of other pro-caste bias tools to apply the oppressed caste discrimination. There is no single pill or solution for multidimensional casteist mentality. We need integrated social engineering. If that is the case what is the need for Periyar and Ambedkar to fight for the proportional representation, which was rejected by then upper caste leaders.

3. Caste names, double glass system, untouchability many sorts of these are symptoms of rotten disease called caste system. The root for this disease is in the religion. This is what said by Periyar and Ambedkar. You won’t keep these symptoms of diseases unchecked until the medicine for complete cure of disease is not found. That is what you are trying to argue and prescribe. When a person tries to retain his or expose his caste name vulgarly to gain undue benefit or privilege, then there is a dire need for curing this also. Not only religion. Therefore removing caste names really works, it may be subjective experience also, but I believe its an universal solution to reduce some sort caste oppression (If not all form of oppression) from the society.

4. At the same time one can’t fly in air just for removing his caste name from his name, as if he is doing great service against caste oppression or caste as such. That is not a great achievement as it is been portrayed to you by some people. I at-least I don’t subscribe to such point of view. It’s a meager and very fundamental thing carried out by a person to shun the discrimination in the society. But I would vehemently oppose if anyone says its of no use at all, so that I will continue using this caste name, not only that, if that caste named person says, I would prescribe others also to retain their caste name is a cruel and superficial argument. According to me people who argue in such a way doesn’t understand what is caste oppression, since they belong to upper caste. Iyers, Iyengars, Naidus, reddys and Nadars and pallars may say their caste name with pride, but what about certain caste people whose professions are cruel oppression against them. How do you want them to pronounce their caste name along with other pervert pride searching so called upper caste people??? Atleast for the comfort of such group of communities’ people should shun the caste names.
[quote] And there's more, if anyone has the appetite.
http://www.epw.in/editorials/tamil-nadu-...lence.html
http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,,H...3f0,0.html
http://www.hrw.org/node/24485/section/8
Caste and Panchayat in Tamil Nadu
Nadar Hegemony
http://www.countercurrents.org/teltumbde301011.htm [/quote]

Yes I agree as it is suggested in some articles above, Dravidian parties are making use of caste divides in TN to rule the castewise divided Tamil Nadu political parties. But what does this got to do with shunning castiest names. You got to understand one thing again and again mere shunning caste is not panacea, its basic fundamental tool. Very important tool to reduce as set caste oppressions, not whole caste system itself. None in this world could suggest a single solution for this rotten caste system. Integrated solutions are must, of which shunning caste name is also one of the fundamental must, if at all one wants to really do away with it.

[quote]{{"However, the Justice Party ministry’s idea of nonbrahmin welfare did not include all nonbrahmin castes. This category practically excluded dalits and other religious minorities. Even among nondalit nonbrahmins, only the minority ‘high’ nonbrahmin castes—reddiars, naickers, mudaliars, vellalars, chettiars—benefited. The composition of the first Justice Party ministry in 1920 reflected this social reality.....The BCs, who were already in a powerful position, received a shot in the arm thanks to the struggle of the vanniyars and the reservation gains made by the MBCs, and to the implementation of the Mandal Commission report in 1990. The nonbrahmin, nondalit bloc became even more powerful. This completes the picture of the accumulation of power by the caste majority. The dalits faced these political circumstances with the political and symbolic power derived from the Ambedkar centenary year celebrations (1991) that accompanied these developments. The qualitative changes in violence against dalits after the 1990s must be understood against this background. The fact of political power in Tamil Nadu resting with the caste majority facilitates the exercise of both societal violence and state violence against dalits."
http://navayana.org/wp-content/uploads/2...xcerpt.pdf}}[/quote]

How does this quotation proves shunning caste names are bogus??? Yes Justice party didn’t had as many dalits, which doesn’t mean Shunning caste names doesn’t work. It was just in its formative years, even then its condemnable for not having proper representation all non-brahmin communities. I agree Dravidian parties actually exploited the caste divide, because the non-tamil Dravidian party leaders were very keen to retain their power than retaining their Ideology. Its not the self-respect movement proponent asked Dravidian parties to behave like that. First of all Periyar was not Supportive of DMK in its formative years. He was not at all interested in electoral politics. If at all you want to mudsling periyar you can read the following and then decide what to do.
Was Periyar A Burden For Dalits? Dr. K. Jamanadas “Shalimar”, Main Rd., Chandrapur, 442402 http://www.ambedkar.org/jamanadas/jd2.pdf
Periyar Criticized non-Brahmins also
Periyar and Self-Respecters did not spare non-brahmins also. In 1930, in an attempt at ‘sanskritization’, an OBC caste put restrictions on adi-dravidas in dress etc. They were highly criticized, comparing their cruelty with that of notorious General Dyre.
Later, in violent atrocities against Dalits, the Dalit side was upheld by Self-Respecters, various resolutions passed and various attempts made towards awakening the Shudras, stressing that brahmin nonbrahmin division was fundamental.
Periyar always warned against upgrading of castes, e.g. he denounced the practice by Palas — an untouchable caste — to call themselves Devendra kula Vellalas, Vanniyars wishing to call themselves kshatriyas and Chettiars referring themselves as vaishyas, and declared these acts are the acts of degrading rather than upgrading.
The rich community of Nattukotti Chettis thought of spending their riches on study of Vedas for brahmin students. Periyar advised them to spend that money on education of Dalits.
On many instances, Periyar expressed disgust at non-Brahmins orthodoxy towards adi-dravidas and remarked that non-brahmins are more orthodox than the brahmins.

Campaign in favor of Reservations http://www.buddhiwadi.org/periyar.htm
Periyar, as noted earlier, was in favor of reservations for non-brahmins (Backward Classes and Dalits). In fact, it was largely because of this issue that he had left the Congress party. The Justice Party, on the other hand, had implemented this policy while in power in 1928-29. Periyar had supported what was then known as the “Communal G.O.” (Government Order) of the then Government of Madras. This order provided for reservation for non-brahmins (Backward Classes, Dalits and other minority communities like Muslims and Christians) in the State Government services which were largely dominated by the Brahmins till then. Thus, the policy of reservations was being followed in Tamil Nadu even before independence.
In 1951, after India became an independent Republic, the Madras High Court declared the “Communal G.O.” of the Madras Government was against the provisions of Indian Constitution. Periyar started a powerful popular agitation against this. Ultimately the Indian Constitution was amended for providing reservations for socially and educationally backward classes [Article 15(4)]. Incidentally, this was the first amendment to the Indian Constitution.
Liberation of Shudras and Panchamas
Periyar’s dictum was “liberation of Shudras depended on liberation of Panchamas”. They fought for common eating, inter-caste marriages, temple entry to exert the right, and opposed Congressmen, who only talked and did nothing. When Dr. Subbarayan became Chief Minister, he nominated two adi-Dravidas to Devasthanam committee. Guruswami declared, if he becomes Viceroy he would appoint Dr. Ambedkar as Law Minister of India.
[quote] No, they do not compete for livelihoods, nor share the same economic status or illiteracy levels. In fact, land owning middle castes categorized as BC/OBC and even some classified as SC are some of the *worst* perpetrators of casteist violence. Refer above in the sources cited to the numerous instances and the political subversion of power. [/quote]
Don’t be conclusive when you don’t have access to ground reality. I didn’t say there are no landlords in Middle casts. What I say is clash is always forged between oppressed BC’s and oppressed SC’s. The people who are relatively well of with wealth are not to be seen on the roads for riots, either they get educated in residential schools or other private schools. If at all they want to oppress they will pay money for economically weaker BC’s or SC’s. Always fight is between relatively equal economic statused BC’s and SC’s.

Whatever it may be, what do all these got to do with shunning the caste names??? You can’t bring all these as excuse for not being able to shun the caste name. Flawed, Flawed argument. Please understand the dynamics of Caste system.

[quote] But when you compare this status with other states its completely different. You are very eager to whitewash Periyar's movement didnt being any change in TN, but the reality TN ranks first in the affirmative actions all over India.
[/quote]
[quote]How much Dalit representation is there in the power structure? Why is Tamil Nadu second to Bihar in caste violence that includes pillage, murders, rapes and chattel slavery? Affirmative action that benefits the middle castes while still keeping a majority of Dalits out of the education and government institutions isn't all that helpful. [/quote]

When I say TN ranks first in affirmative it means that TN has 69% reservation, which benefits all, Daltis, BC and OBC's. No other state have such affirmative action, even have rural quotas for medical admissions and engineering admissions.

Why Gandhian freedom movement struggle born country India is having Green Hunt kind of Anti-people strategies to handle the Moist menace. Is it the fault of Gandhi, if Indian Government looes its compassion and kindness for oppressed people??? Disloyal politicians like Karunanidhi, MGR , Jeaylalitha ruined the state. They are non-Tamils, they are exploiting the Caste divides. Moreover the population wise there are two or three middle level castes say x, y, z castes high in TN. But wealthwise middle level A,B,C,D castes are high but population is very low. Therefore you see high chances of economic and power disparity in TN. Using this lack of absolute majority and power together, non-Tamils are continuously occupying key locations in power of TN. Both Tamil and Non-tamil middle caste wealthy people keep on exploiting the caste divide between the poor BC, OBC and SC castes for their vote bank politics. For which you cant blame Dravidian self-respect movement proponent. You cant defend retaining cast surname with these kind of arguments against various failiures of Dravidian movements. Removing caste surnames for the sake equal society is a brillaint working Idea, to avoid specific types of caste oppression, certainly not for completely removing the caste system. for which multidimensional approach is needed, including removal caste surnames.


[quote] Go and check statistics from SC-ST education statistics with Central government. Here in TN you could see higher number of Dalit and BC students competing with other students in open quota itself. Its because people where able to cross caste barriors atleast to an extant. /
[/quote]

At this moment I couldn find the statistics for SC, ST competing in open category. But I remember coming across such stat once. Will get you that statistics when I get it again.

But I have another statistics for attitudes of General category students and Teachers over SC-ST. It may be attributable to lack of caste surnames too.

Attitude of General Category Students
The majority of the students found the attitude of general category students towards SC, ST students to be friendly. Almost the rest found the same to be normal. In all the states other than Tamil Nadu the majority of the students (about 43 to 59 percent) found the attitude to be normal where as in Tamil Nadu as high as 80 percent of the students found the relationship to be friendly.
Attitude of Faculty Members
About 50 percent of the students have felt that the attitude of the faculty members towards the SC, ST students was neutral. But one third of them have felt that the faculty members were more favourable towards the SC, ST students. In all the states except Tamil Nadu a large number of the students found the faculty members to be neutral – about 50 percent in Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal, about 70 percent in Delhi and more than 90 percent in Gujarat. However in Tamil Nadu about 70 percent of the students felt that the attitude of the faculty members was more favourable to the SC, ST students.

http://planningcommission.nic.in/reports...y_cpss.pdf
[quote]Its better to accept the caste names will lead to favouritism.... Removing caste name is just a first step towards egaliterian society, first step is never a last where we see complete change.
[/quote]
[quote]Give me one instance of a society where tribalism/casteism died off or became weak because people decided to change their names. Besides, people identify castes well beyond someone's last name. Where you are from, what dialect you speak, what you eat, sometimes even how you look/dress, your first name even--can and does give out your caste. [/quote]
"Caste is a notion, it is a state of the mind. The destruction of Caste does not therefore mean the destruction of a physical barrier. It means a notional change." (Dr.Ambedkar)

Please get to learn more about caste systems and how people behave, just because you want defend you behavior of having caste name don’t make dry arguments. See what does Dr.Ambedkar says. Caste system and biases are is multidimensional, just because you wanna destruct the notion that removing caste name helps little bit to avoid caste biases, don’t ask any suggestion proposed to eradicate caste bias should kill off or weaken the caste system completely. Hope you would be able to understand these fundamentals by now.

I know how caste name functions; this would keep on reminding other people that he belongs to so and so caste, like an alarm, which leads to biases. You suggest me any other such blatant and transparent caste tool which would be used against other people for privilege or bias.

Or you suggest me single solution which ends off the caste system completely, since you always asking single pill remedy for deep rooted disease. According to me solution is multi-dimensional, one such fundamental and important is cast name removal.
[quote]It also seems to me that if I were to live in Tamil Nadu, having the last name Iyer or Iyengar is far more disadvantageous than having a generic Hindu last name--as people seem to have some real antipathy against anyone with the last name Iyer/Iyengar. [/quote]
These are propaganda by certain group of immature upper caste people, who hate Periyar’s self-respect movement to the core, keep doll drumming this prejudice all over India, including the congress governments well known left Ideologist, Manishankar MP. I love him in all other aspects, except his continuous venom against Self-respect movement. Read the following, in the present day Tamil Nadu huge discourse is happening only about Middle castes oppressing SC ST’s only. That too certain groups vehemently opposing middle castes for using caste names with, kshatriya and devendrakula etc…. So stop spreading ill opinion about TN and its people. So far TN is not ruled by a Tamilian. Some crooked Non-Tamils are ruling repeatedly, who are exploiting the caste divides for their vote bank politics. For which you cant blame Periyar. Being a Non-Tamil from TN I am telling these facts. I wish Iyers and Iyengars stop torturing Tamils for what Non-Tamil Periyar did. Actually the justice party was initially spearheaded by Dhoudharies, reddies and Naidus. Only at the final stage Periyar changed Justice party in Dravidar Kazhagam.

Its unbelievable you bring in all the prejudices you have against Periyar’s self-respect movement to defend your act of retaining your caste and prescribing having caste name is harmless for others too. Read the following and shed your prejudices.
Periyar Criticized non-Brahmins also
Periyar and Self-Respecters did not spare non-brahmins also. In 1930, in an attempt at ‘sanskritization’, an OBC caste put restrictions on adi-dravidas in dress etc. They were highly criticized, comparing their cruelty with that of notorious General Dyre.
Later, in violent atrocities against Dalits, the Dalit side was upheld by Self-Respecters, various resolutions passed and various attempts made towards awakening the Shudras, stressing that brahmin nonbrahmin division was fundamental.
Periyar always warned against upgrading of castes, e.g. he denounced the practice by Palas — an untouchable caste — to call themselves Devendra kula Vellalas, Vanniyars wishing to call themselves kshatriyas and Chettiars referring themselves as vaishyas, and declared these acts are the acts of degrading rather than upgrading.
The rich community of Nattukotti Chettis thought of spending their riches on study of Vedas for brahmin students. Periyar advised them to spend that money on education of Dalits.
On many instances, Periyar expressed disgust at non-Brahmins orthodoxy towards adi-dravidas and remarked that non-brahmins are more orthodox than the brahmins.
Reply
#19
Quote: The biggest effect in terms of name change seems to come from changing one's religion based, rather than caste based name. This is true not just for all over India, but also Tamil Nadu. Given that fact, are you admitting that we ought to privilege caste over religion? 
No, a big no. There is no biggest effect smallest effect bargain or trade off here. Both the evils should go. You can retain your favourite evil, but for me both kind of names are evils. Caste neutral and religion neutral names are needed. There is over below argument. Moreover you have complete liberty to follow whatever you want but you can’t make baseless arguments to sell your wishfull recipe for disaster. 

As a telugu, who lives in Kanchipuram district I tell you my experience with caste names. Untill the age of 20’s we never at our home brought in any debate about why we don’t have caste names in TN. It was such a conducive environment in schools of TN. We never felt the need for retaining caste names. Some of my cousins and brothers after the age of 20, they realized In AP people are using caste names freely, they have it in their certificate itself. Now all my cousins and brothers are arguing why cant we also have caste names hereafter. They argue like this because they are angry about affirmative policies for Dalits and BC’s. Now all of them saying caste is their pride and started using the caste names again, planning to change in their certificates too. They wanted to bring in caste names for their childrens too, to retain their pride. They are in a way Hindu centric. I openly discussing this because I want you to understand certain people who find caste pride would find refuge in your new variant of arguments which claims removing caste names is bogus logic. Day by day awareness about the need for affirmative actions are reducing. Which is very important campaign agenda for me than doing campaign for retaining caste names. 
Reply
#20
We need to consider two aspects
1. Does retaining caste names increase the social divide?
2. Does forgoing caste names decrease the social divide?

Now answer to 2 is mostly likely No. And I guess envirovivek disagrees about this. But for that you need to produce evidence that it does. From the opposing side this case study shows that it has been tried once before and was total failure. The reason for this failure is that caste is so pervasive that there are a lot of indicators to give your caste. Where I come from, just the way a language is spoken can give the caste that you are from (including sub castes).

The answer for 1 can get complicated. I definitely see how caste names can be used subversively. But answer to 1 has its link with 2, and that is that name is just a part of the whole deal. Removing it most likely won't make a difference. So even though it might be a contributing factor, it is not the ONLY contributing factor and hence, IMO, better approach is to attack the whole system.
[+] 2 users Like Kanad Kanhere's post
Reply
#21
[quote='Kanad Kanhere' pid='7400' dateline='1349832434']
[quote]We need to consider two aspects
1. Does retaining caste names increase the social divide?[/quote]

Yes absolutely yes because, untill caste name prevails the groupism and nepotism is very easy even in public gatherings where caste names are public.

[quote]2. Does forgoing caste names decrease the social divide?[/quote]

I won't say it decreases the caste divide completely or greatly. But it certainly decreases the chances for discrimination based on caste name to significant extent in public. If you take for example TN none, can enquire about opposite persons caste name outrightly. Such discussions may happen between close friends with good Intimation, but that happen with strangers or normal friends. From my school age I had came across n number of class mates, till this, I hardly know very few peoples caste names. Which itself a good example how it works.

[quote]Now answer to 2 is mostly likely No. And I guess envirovivek disagrees about this. But for that you need to produce evidence that it does.[/quote]

I neither disagree or agree. Removing caste name won't do away with caste system as such, it will do away certainly with the discrimination and biases associated with the caste Indicator, public display of caste names. Nothing more nothing less, why some of you couldn understand this nuance. The moment caste pride seeking people loose their caste name in public, automatically, people who carry burdened caste name would also come out of that caste burden atleast in his public life, even if not in personal, cultural and family life. Which would take some time to change, which needs multidimensional additional caste negation tools.. Not only caste burdened man come out of his problems, but pervert caste pride seeking person would also loose opportunities to get privileges based on caste name display.

( Note:Only if disagree I have to prove, but am giving the common sense based argument. I am not saying complete caste system is destroyed. so there is no need of proofs I guess.)

[quote]From the opposing side this case study shows that it has been tried once before and was total failure.[/quote]
Thank you for sharing this interesting article.
The same kind of movement is there in TN also for last couple of decades, which asks for new caste free group for intercaste marriages and also reservations and previlages if necessary to boost intercaste marriage. These were the suggestions from the organisation which works for this cause. People are already mobilising. This will be dream come true in few more decades atleast.

[quote]The reason for this failure is that caste is so pervasive that there are a lot of indicators to give your caste. Where I come from, just the way a language is spoken can give the caste that you are from (including sub castes).[/quote]

Well said, caste is pervasive and it has diverse indicators, caste name is one such Indicator. The goal of ours is to tackle each and every indicators. How to tackle them is to be thought over. Tackling an Indicator would solve problems associated with that particular Indicator. Likewise removal of maximum Indicators would reap maximum benefit, if not complete benefit in near future. Social engineering is must. Submerging into pessimism will not take us anywhere.

[quote]The answer for 1 can get complicated. I definitely see how caste names can be used subversively. But answer to 1 has its link with 2, and that is that name is just a part of the whole deal. Removing it most likely won't make a difference. So even though it might be a contributing factor, it is not the ONLY contributing factor and hence, IMO, better approach is to attack the whole system.
[/quote]

Take inspiration from microbes or even predators. Any predator or microbe would certainly think of killing its prey animal. To kill, it makes strategy to kill, weather to bite on the leg or bite on the neck or stomach. Which would bring faster death of the prey animal. sometimes animals make multiple attacks in combination, bite on neck and legs in combination. Likewise we need combination of tools, i.e integrated approach, optimism would enable us to reap benefit from do away of one by one Indicator in tandem or parallel. When one suggests removal of caste surnames, it doesn't mean its the complete solution for killing of caste system, its just one among many. We should harness power to destruct caste system by making use of various tools, like doing away with caste surnames, Intercaste marriages, destructing caste hierarchic rural village set up etc.,.. We need all tools.

Thank you for making me to put my point much more clearly....
Reply
#22
(10-Oct-2012, 08:09 AM)envirovivek Wrote: Well said, caste is pervasive and it has diverse indicators, caste name is one such Indicator. The goal of ours is to tackle each and every indicators. How to tackle them is to be thought over. Tackling an Indicator would solve problems associated with that particular Indicator. Likewise removal of maximum Indicators would reap maximum benefit, if not complete benefit in near future. Social engineering is must. Submerging into pessimism will not take us anywhere.

My fundamental disagreement is here. Its not the indicators, but the causes that need to be fought. The case study that I pointed to was not just unsuccessful, it completely missed the target altogether and actually ended up bolstering the system by creating a new caste altogether.

The point is that these indicators are just the visible part of the inherent problem. Removing the visible part is not going to solve anything. I have a strong feeling that the fallacious reasoning is: reversing of causality i.e. Because of casteist mentality resulted in creating a deep divide which manifests in names. Its not like different names resulted in casteist mentality.

There is another problem with dropping caste names, and that is it will help the upper castes further more. The concept is simple. In an imbalanced society suppose we suddenly equalize everything, the privileged gain a huge advantage. It is because of this very reason affirmative action policies are implemented.
[+] 1 user Likes Kanad Kanhere's post
Reply
#23
(10-Oct-2012, 08:39 AM)Kanad Kanhere Wrote: [quote='envirovivek' pid='7401' dateline='1349836769']
Well said, caste is pervasive and it has diverse indicators, caste name is one such Indicator. The goal of ours is to tackle each and every indicators. How to tackle them is to be thought over. Tackling an Indicator would solve problems associated with that particular Indicator. Likewise removal of maximum Indicators would reap maximum benefit, if not complete benefit in near future. Social engineering is must. Submerging into pessimism will not take us anywhere.

Quote:My fundamental disagreement is here. Its not the indicators, but the causes that need to be fought. The case study that I pointed to was not just unsuccessful, it completely missed the target altogether and actually ended up bolstering the system by creating a new caste altogether.

May be I confused with words indicator or symptom of inherent problem, i.e causative. In TN society after removing caste names still organisations fighting against the causative too, that is religion. People are opting for more non-religious names, shunning religious ritual based marriages etc. Which needs much more widespread acceptance and5 social engineering. The case study which you pointed out might have failed but government mediated caste-withered group may find success, At this moment I couldn say more about that failed case study.

Quote:The point is that these indicators are just the visible part of the inherent problem. Removing the visible part is not going to solve anything. I have a strong feeling that the fallacious reasoning is: reversing of causality i.e. Because of casteist mentality resulted in creating a deep divide which manifests in names. Its not like different names resulted in casteist mentality.

I agree completely, removing Indicators alone won't solve the problem, but even these glaring indicators or symptoms of rotten disease caste system should be treated too. We need not put battles one after the other, which should be battled together or in parallel. Tamil Nadu is best example for that, both the battles are still continuing without any compromise. Battle against religion as well as caste symptoms or Indicator.

Quote:There is another problem with dropping caste names, and that is it will help the upper castes further more. The concept is simple. In an imbalanced society suppose we suddenly equalize everything, the privileged gain a huge advantage. It is because of this very reason affirmative action policies are implemented.

Just because caste names are removed TN didn't stopped or abandoned its affirmative actions, it even has one of the highest % of affirmative action in the country. 69 % reservation for SC, ST, BC, MBC and OBC. These affirmative actions continue untill the society gets equalized, there is no chance for it in near future. Therefore no worries. Affirmative actions continues. We need affirmative actions as well as removal of caste indicators like caste surnames.

Reply
#24
Quote:Come on, in social engineering just a single curative act won't vanish the rotten sydrome or disease one has. Avoiding caste name from public display will avoid certain types of privileges you get by displaying it publicly-. The main idea behind framing such a cultural system is to avoid the biases and undue privileges specifically associated with this public display of caste names. For example, if a person has his caste name in public display, the teachers in school would find it 99% easier to group people and do favouritism according to their caste interests. If caste names are avoid from using publicly would such a easy nepotism be possible that easily???. Like this we can give n number of examples.

It doesn't because there are plenty of OTHER caste indicators than last name--the language, the way you dress/look, who your parents are, where you are from, which social groups you belong to, your dietary habits, etc all give out caste. A teacher can easily make out on this basis and they often do in Tamil Nadu. There's a entire groups of Dalit students who are failed or harassed by teachers and professors (non-Brahmin teachers/proffs at that).

Quote:What I like to say is that, the way you stress its a bogus logic is itself showing how much hatred you do have towards, people who advocated this act of doing away with caste names. Can I suspect that you hate dravidian/Self-respect movement to the core????


I stress the logic because it is bogus, something you have not been able to show as wrong. Your assumptions about hating Dravidian/Self Respect movement are plain wrong and colored by your ideological hackery. While I am glad for the Self-Respect movement, it is not without flaws and it seems to have vastly benefited middle castes than Dalits. That isn't an opinion, that is proven fact given all the research data and reports I presented earlier.

Quote:Weather removing the caste name does really brings in change or not, could not be quantified with absolute numbers to either speak in favor or against it.


Yes, it should be. Why shouldn't a tactic be evaluated for its success? Especially when you demand people give up their family names. If something doesn't work, as rationalists we find better methods rather than sticking to failed methods. Unless one isn't a rationalist and is merely an ideologue.

Quote:I know n number people who take huge pride in having their caste names like reddy, naidu, aiyer iyengar blah blah... Having caste names behind your name is not possible in TN because which won't be added into any of your government documents right from you Birth certificate.

Your anecdata is of no use. And it is very much possible to have caste names as last names, considering the thousands of Mudaliars, Gounders, Thevars, Pillai, Nair, etc as last names.

Quote:Yes people feel great because, for example when caste name displayed in public, there are 99% probablity a person gets an house for rent based on the caste from a caste biased person, but when caste name is not mentioned publicly, there are relatively very less chances the house owner asks the tenant about castes, just for the sake of decency.

And that doesn't happen with religious names, like "Vivek"? If the numbers are to go by, discrimination against Muslim names is far greater all over India than caste names. Not only that, religion based discrimination in general is far more prevalent than caste based discrimination. Both are proven in the sources cited in my previous response to you.

I'd also like for you to show me *any* study that specifically documents Brahmin names being given preference in Tamil Nadu. Because from everything that I am seeing, Brahmin last names in Tamil Nadu seem to get far more derision than some extra perks. So please, back up your claims with numbers.

I
Quote:f you want me to list the tools for caste biasers, I will try listing some,
Tools For cáste biasers- Solution to counter those tools

In your prescription, you forgot the BIGGEST one. Inter-caste marriage. Yet a lot of those, in fact most people, who rant against caste based names--seldom break out of their caste and marry someone outside of it. Somehow they become scaredy cats in front of their casteist parents.
You have attacked me numerous times and called me names, yet I am the one who went and married out of my caste, my race, my nationality and my religious background. Actions speak louder than words, and in this case empty chest-thumping, useless and cumbersome gestures like changing one's last name.

Name change does next to nothing, in fact it is actually deprives Dalits of having the pride to retain their caste name. If an oppressed group like Dalits wants to retain pride in their caste name, who are you as an upper caste person to tell that they shouldn't retain their caste based last name?
Privileged, much?


Quote:Anyhow if your above statement is true, then why you get so annoyed to shed away the system which was brought in by the imperialists to divide our society.????

Because it is now part of my identity. The imperialists also abolished Sati and introduced English. Are you going to give up English because it was brought in by imperialists?


Quote:But according to my knowledge in epigraphy, there are enough proofs, which are inscribed in temples, quoting caste names of so and so kings or donors to the temple. So I cant believe only British brought in the system of having caste names behind. Even if Tamil chieftains were not fond of having caste names, I could see Telugu kings or caste groups who were in Tamil Nadu were fond of having the caste names as a cheap pride.

Citations please?

Quote:This is such an horrible argument. This is why my reply was bit harsh today morning in chennai freethinkers facebook forum. You make such flawed and rude arguement, on top of it you are dictating rules for others. When I argue you have to do away with cancer in the society, you are counter arguing with me why you didn't do away with AIDS first of all.

What you are proposing is more like combating cancer with homeopathic quackery, while completely ignoring an AIDS epidemic and suggesting that it is not a big deal.



Quote:People who do Caste bias or religious bias they wait for none, we got to handle both of them in parallel.

Oh really? Is that why you have a Hindu name still, while ranting on and being ridiculously rude to someone with a caste based last name?
I don't see you screaming hoarse over Hindu names and changing your own Hindu name.

Quote: I am already searching for Good non-religious names from Tamil Sangam Literatures. So therefore we need change in both.


You realize that all Tamil literary names would still be Hindu and not Muslim or Christian, right?
That's called having Hindu privilege, which you aren't even aware of. You think having the name Tamizhmozhi would make someone think you are a Muslim?
I've got news for you--No.


Quote:Removing caste names could be the foundation for an eagalitarian society, it’s certainly not complete cure. Religious meaning names are given names, which are given by ones parents from childhood. Therefore you can’t compare the given names and caste names equally when it comes to removing of names. I hope you will at least now on stop giving this as an excuse for retaining caste names. Both the evils should be eradicated, even if I couldn’t eradicate I won’t argue that there is no evil in the ill-deed which am doing by having caste name.


Ah, so removing one's last name is easy because you say so--but removing one's first name is conveniently difficult? Hypocrisy much? Just because you come from a culture where no one uses last name does not mean that applies to all cultures, especially not to those who live in other parts of India or other parts of world where having a last name is a must and where last name is just as important of an identifier as first name.
Do you ask your Swedish friends to remove their Swedish last names so that Sami an other indigenous people don't get discriminate against for having distinctly non-Swedish last names?

I highly doubt it.


Quote:If you ask me personally I have enough zeal for doing away with these religious names. If you really need proof for my zeal, I would be ready to give you from my e-mail archives of my communication with Tamil and Telugu linguists. Do you need it???

The proof I need is you officially changing your name from Vivek to something Muslim or something completely unidentifiable to anyone as a religious name. Show me newspaper ads where you officially change your name, and then I'll take your claims of being above religious privileges seriously.


Quote:Who said non-brahmins are having caste specific last names??? What are they give me some exampels.I didn't come across any of that sort so far as I come across Iyer and Iyengar...


I raised that question above about caste specific last names is because i thought you are denoting something different from caste names as such when you mentioned caste specific last names. Now I understand in your writings in last post the caste names and caste specific last names are same.

Quote:And don't imagine too much I will never get bothered if you start targeting Non-brahmins, if they use their caste names in inhumane way. I have come accross many of such sorts like reddy's naidu's, Naikars, Nadars many times.



In CFT alone, there are plenty of non-Brahmins with caste names. Why do I not see you or anyone else getting into such tizzy and attacking those folks?
I am sorry, but I call bunkum on this claim that this is for any caste names. It seems it is very specific to Brahmin caste names--even though it seems the biggest and main culprits perpetuating caste system in both individual cases and institutional power are non-Brahmins.


Quote:Yes am proposing, not dictating.


And you are wrong. You as an upper caste person don't get to dictate to oppressed castes what they should or should not be named. You said earlier that you'd attack anyone with caste based last name--would you attack Dalits because they choose to keep their last names?

Quote: Modern generation of Tamil Nadu is beyond the caste surnames, which is out of fashion from their birth certificate through schooldays. Many people who retain caste name in TN is either pro-hinduthva or anti-self respect movement

If you had read some of the links I had posted, you wouldn't be saying this because your statements simply clash with the facts presented in them. Many middle castes still retain their last names. Also, using your logic that Tamil Nadu is beyond caste names--why hasn't casteism vanished? Actually, screw vanishing--why has casteism increased so much and has gotten far more violent than it was in the 1950s and 1960s? Since the 1980s, Tamil Nadu has seen a significant rise in caste violence, particularly towards Dalits. It has shown no indication of slowing down or even stabilizing.



Quote:Yes the superficial research from the internet only result in these kind flawed and arrogant arguments. One got to have exposed to the field realities to know the dynamics. I will bring out flaws in your arguement point by point.

This is such nonsense. I don't need to live in India to know that Dalits are oppressed. How is your logic any different from some Hindutva crazy who tells me that unless I live in India, I cannot say that Hindus don't oppress Muslims?


Quote:You are saying, that you had gone through all these books, do show me a single statistical proof which says removing caste named didnt or did benefitted Tamil Nadu community.



That's called proving a negative and is a logical fallacy. For you to demand that people change their last names to remove caste, the burden of proof is upon you to show research proving a beneficial effect.

Quote: Don't get your eyes dim by the hatred you have towards a Kannadiga/Telugu Periyar's self-respect movement in Tamil Nadu. Don't make use of that hatred to distort the image of TN and TN people. Why do some people who hate non-Tamil periyar is hating Tamil community too and bringing bad name to Tamil people and TN.

Right! All those studies and reports are fabricated. UNHCR, HRW, Amnesty International, various Dalit Rights groups, various Dalit academics, etc all are just spewing lies to defame Tamild Nadu and Tamil people. You know, Denial isn't just a river in Egypt.
Face the reality and dispute anything cited by showing what's factually wrong. Prove it with credible citations. Empty declarations are useless.


Quote: But what is the point in bringing these proofs for the argument about the benefits of removing caste names. Caste system is carried from one generation to another generation in a multidynamic way. Among the multidynamics removing caste names is removal of single cause for discrimination. When this single cause i.e caste name is absent, people make use of other pro-caste bias tools to apply the oppressed caste discrimination. There is no single pill or solution for multidimensional casteist mentality. We need integrated social engineering. If that is the case what is the need for Periyar and Ambedkar to fight for the proportional representation, which was rejected by then upper caste leaders.

Do you realize the irony here, that Ambedkar's own last name was a Brahmin one, given to him by his mentor? Are you going to condemn Ambedkar for keeping a Brahmin last name now, since you think caste names are so very horrible?
You yourself admit that this is multidimensional, in that case--do you condemn those who marry within their caste the way you condemn people with caste based last name?
I don't think so. Hypocrisy at its finest.




Quote:How does this quotation proves shunning caste names are bogus??? Yes Justice party didn’t had as many dalits, which doesn’t mean Shunning caste names doesn’t work. It was just in its formative years, even then its condemnable for not having proper representation all non-brahmin communities.


Don't be purposely obtuse. I posted it to show that Self-Respect movement within itself excluded Dalits and others based on caste. It was a movement that helped with caste, but by no means was it perfect the way many of its supporters claimed it to be. And just as much, the solutions proposed such as removal of caste name but not caste-intermarriage or removal of religious names--were cosmetic and did little to lessen caste discrimination against Dalits.

Quote:On many instances, Periyar expressed disgust at non-Brahmins orthodoxy towards adi-dravidas and remarked that non-brahmins are more orthodox than the brahmins.
That's wonderful and all, but last I checked Periyar isn't the end all be all of the Self-Respect movement.

Quote:Don’t be conclusive when you don’t have access to ground reality... Always fight is between relatively equal economic statused BC’s and SC’s.


I think I'll trust Dalit researchers, Human rights groups, UNHRC, various news reports and government reports over some anecdotal evidence that you claim to have. Your claim is patently false.

Quote:Whatever it may be, what do all these got to do with shunning the caste names??? You can’t bring all these as excuse for not being able to shun the caste name. Flawed, Flawed argument. Please understand the dynamics of Caste system.

I am understanding the dynamics and that is why I call shenanigans on this cosmetic gesture. If people spent half as much time promoting intercaste marriage and anti-caste discrimination by institutional powers as they do chest thumping against Brahmin last names, the state would have far less caste issues.


Quote:When I say TN ranks first in affirmative it means that TN has 69% reservation, which benefits all, Daltis, BC and OBC's. No other state have such affirmative action, even have rural quotas for medical admissions and engineering admissions.


Which again benefits powerful middle castes like Thevars, Chettiyars, Gounders, Nadars who are classified as OBC or BC. They should be deemed upper caste given the collective amount of wealth and political clout they have, almost certainly surpassing the Brahmins in Tamil Nadu.

Quote:Disloyal politicians like Karunanidhi, MGR , Jeaylalitha ruined the state. They are non-Tamils, they are exploiting the Caste divides.


o_O
Why aren't they Tamil? Why are you being so xenophobic and nativist? So I am not an American, because I was born in India? Is that your logic? Do you realize you sound like those Hindutvadis who claim Sonia and Rahul Gandhi aren't Indian because they are white?

Tamils do exploit caste divides. Don't blame non-Tamils.




Quote:But I have another statistics for attitudes of General category students and Teachers over SC-ST. It may be attributable to lack of caste surnames too.
http://planningcommission.nic.in/reports...y_cpss.pdf

First of all, prove the last name correlation with data--don't just make some hypothesis without proof to back it up. Next, the question asks general category student if they feel the faculty favors SC/ST students. It means nothing because it is the opinion of SC/ST students that counts in terms of how they are treated.

Quote:"Caste is a notion, it is a state of the mind. The destruction of Caste does not therefore mean the destruction of a physical barrier. It means a notional change." (Dr.Ambedkar)...Please get to learn more about caste systems and how people behave, just because you want defend you behavior of having caste name don’t make dry arguments. See what does Dr.Ambedkar says.
Do you get the irony that you are quoting someone with a Brahmin last name?

Quote:Or you suggest me single solution which ends off the caste system completely, since you always asking single pill remedy for deep rooted disease.


Inter-caste and inter-religious marriages, challenging casteism when one sees it from one's family, friends, acquaintances. Supporting public policy that helps give opportunity and try to level the playing field for oppressed groups. Accepting and acknowledging that those of us born in upper/middle caste families have caste privilege.

Quote:These are propaganda by certain group of immature upper caste people, who hate Periyar’s self-respect movement to the core, keep doll drumming this prejudice all over India, including the congress governments well known left Ideologist, Manishankar MP.


You can call it propaganda all you wish (and I don't much care for Manishankar Aiyer), but it seems to me that the only places where a Brahmin name can benefit someone in Tamil Nadu is in Tam-Bram neighborhoods, of which there are far and few in between. I doubt anyone with the last name Iyer or Iyengar would somehow climb the political ladder in Tamil Nadu--heck, even Amma has kept her Hebbar Iyengar last name out.

Quote:So stop spreading ill opinion about TN and its people. So far TN is not ruled by a Tamilian. Some crooked Non-Tamils are ruling repeatedly, who are exploiting the caste divides for their vote bank politics.
Quote: I agree Dravidian parties actually exploited the caste divide, because the non-tamil Dravidian party leaders were very keen to retain their power than retaining their Ideology.

LOL, right. Blame it on non-Tamils. Please, plenty of Tamil leaders were guilty of this as well. In one of the papers cited, it showed how Nadars benefited disproportionately under Kamaraj's political era.
The Tamil people on the whole, just as most fellow Indians--are casteist. Accept that fact and deal with it. And last I checked, Karunanidhi is very much a Tamilian, thank you very much.


Quote:Its unbelievable you bring in all the prejudices you have against Periyar’s self-respect movement to defend your act of retaining your caste and prescribing having caste name is harmless for others too. Read the following and shed your prejudices.

Do you know what a strawman fallacy is?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man
That is exactly what you are engaging in.
[+] 1 user Likes Gayaisbrown's post
Reply


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  the caste and system. jaydcp 2 3,054 07-Jul-2013, 07:51 PM
Last Post: jaydcp
  On Vivekananda's defense of caste Lije 33 21,896 13-Jun-2013, 12:27 AM
Last Post: arvindiyer
  HAF report on caste discrimination Lije 1 3,447 01-Sep-2011, 01:02 PM
Last Post: Lije
  The Manu Smriti on Caste Violence TTCUSM 10 15,381 15-Aug-2011, 05:20 PM
Last Post: sojourner



Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)