RT Book, Whole DB /z-wcorg/ DS http://worldcat.org ID 56214702 LA English T1 Dr. Ambedkar and untouchability : fighting the Indian caste system A1 Jaffrelot, Christophe., PB Columbia University Press PP New York YR 2005 SN 0231136021 9780231136020 AB "B. R. Ambedkar (1891-1956) rose from a community of untouchables to become a major figure in modern Indian history. He was the first Dalit, or low-caste Hindu, ever to be formally educated, studying in the United States and Britain, where he gained his Ph. D. Despite his achievements he remained true to his background and fought for the Dalits throughout his life. He is universally regarded as India's first and foremost Dalit leader." "For years Ambedkar battled alone against the Indian political establishment, including Gandhi, who resisted his attempt to formalize and codify a separate identity for the Dalits. Nonetheless, he became law minister in the first government of independent India and, more important, was elected chairman of the committee which drafted the Indian Constitution. Here he modified Gandhian attempts to influence the Indian polity. He then distanced himself from politics and sought solace in Buddhism, to which he converted in 1956, a few months before his death." "Jaffrelot focuses on Ambedkar's three key roles: as social theorist, as statesman and politician, and as an advocate of conversion to Buddhism as an escape route for India's Dalits. In each case he pioneered new strategies that proved effective in his lifetime and still resonate today."--Jacket.