The Caste System: Effects on Poverty in India Essay

4173 Words Feb 18th, 2013 17 Pages
Global Majority E-Journal, Vol. 1, No. 2 (December 2010), pp. 97-106

The Caste System: Effects on Poverty in
India, Nepal and Sri Lanka
Jasmine Rao

Abstract
Though mostly outlawed, the caste system continues to be one of the key drivers of poverty and inequality in South Asia. This article reviews the linkage between poverty and the caste system in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. It also discusses the situation of the so-called Dalits (untouchables), which are typically considered to fall outside of the caste system. In addition to secondary evidence based on recent literature analyzing the relevance and impact of the caste system on poverty, the article is also based on an interview with a young male Indian, who experienced the
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Various contributions provide information on the history of poverty in India as well as the consequences of such poverty. The contributions attempt to analyze how poverty accelerated in India and the complications in trying to end it.
98

Overall, the five volumes come to the conclusion that the case system is one of the factors that has contributed to poverty as well as complicated the process of alleviating poverty in India.
Silva and Hettihewage (2001) focus on poverty, social exclusion and the impact of selected legal measures against caste discrimination in South Asia. They analyze how the lowest caste is looked at in terms of how they are affected by their position in society and discuss the issues involved with the reservation system in trying to help the untouchables get out of poverty. Based on their analysis, they conclude (p. 69) that ―[e]ven though the caste system primarily encompasses a value system applicable to ritual domain and social relations, it also determines the relative worth and level of dignity of human beings, affecting their overall position including their livelihood security, freedom, and adaptation to a modern market economy.‖
Rose (1967) discusses the effects of various sociological factors such as joint family, caste system and Hindu religious values on economic development in India. He also provides possible solutions for increasing economic efficiency.
Kar (2007) wrote

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