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Title: Caste, Untouchability and Social Conflict in Nineteenth Century Bengal
Other Titles: Karatoya, NBU J. Hist. Vol. 14, March 2021, pp 142 - 163
Authors: Chowdhury, Chanchal
Keywords: Caste
Issue Date: Mar-2021
Publisher: University of North Bengal
Abstract: Caste system and untouchability were an integral part of social life among the Hindus and Muslims of pre-Plassey Bengal. These two customs were deeply rooted in selfsufficient villages where people lived with their fellow caste-men adopting their hereditary occupations. The social conflict, generated due to the hierarchical division of the caste system, was felt in the society just like mild waves. East India Company servants ruined the self-sufficient village economy of Bengal through their ruthless exploitation of artisans and craftsmen. Consequently, they had to move from their village abodes and adopt alternative occupations generated under the Company’s rule. Very soon, some ambitious individuals with low social backgrounds amassed huge wealth and began to claim higher social status for their castes. Leaders of many castes began to lodge protests against their low social position, and petitions were submitted before British authorities for approval of higher precedence of their castes on the social ladder. As a result, intensified caste conflict was produced in the society of nineteenth century Bengal.
Appears in Collections:Karatoya Vol.14 (March 2021)

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