Survival, Struggle and Identity in Dalit and Afro-American Literature
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Amiri Baraka’s Obie winning play, Dutchman (1964), depicts entrenched race relations in the USA during the civil rights era of which the playwright had a firsthand knowledge. But, it does something more than that. Employing semi-absurdist techniques and a closed setting that often reminds one of the dramaturgy of Harold Pinter, the play shows troubled race relations at work that operates on many levels. This, nevertheless, brings in the issues of survival, identity, and struggle in Afro-American literature that has parallels with the dalit movement in India, particularly in Maharashtra, in the poetry of writers like Namdeo Dhasal, Baburao Bhagul and others. While the Black Panther Movement of the 1960s called for a recourse to violent techniques to change the status quo, similar ideology was also adopted by the Dalit Panthers to reinforce the oppressed dalit psyche and identity. This chapter would like to demonstrate these similaritiesfrom a Deleuzian–Guattarian perspective.
KeywordsDalit Panther Black Panther Civil rights Identity Afro-American Dalits Deleuze and Guattari
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