How to identify & moderate caste-based cyberbullying content?
The type of posts that are offensive, insulting and humiliating to the bahujan Community comprising of identities of Dalits (Former "untouchables), Bahujans( backward castes that were ertswhole known as Shudras) and Adivasi (Tribal populations).
By Upper castes (UC) (A.ka. Savarnas) I mean the people belonging to the Brahmin, Kshatriya and Vaishyia (in that order) Varnas)
(These definitions are for non-Indians to understand.)
1) Anti-Affirmative action/ reservation posts-
Some people in academia try to point out the loopholes in the reservation policies from a policy/economic point of view. That's not casteist per se. Bahujans intellectuals counter these arguments very well
♦️ But when Savarnas use these arguments to insult, mock, humiliate bahujan to indicate they are incompetent, stupid, worthless, "thieves" who stole their place because of reservation. Or anything of that nature. It amounts to bullying... 2/n
2) Use of Caste Slurs - There are certain caste names used as insults to say someone is dirty, unkempt, badly dressed. Or simply to humiliate. Some of them are chamar, Madiga, Hole- Madiga, bhangi, pareiyan, Pakki, etc here's a video talking about this:
♦️ These are not only humiliating to the people who belong to such castes, but also, turning their identities into a cruel and insulting adjectives.
3) Content Justifying the caste system: There are some UCs, who use social Darwinism/ genetics/ social order maintanance to justify the caste system.
Eg. If this is, "Brahmin Women are the prettiest", "Tamil Brahmins are the smartest", " Dalits or certain castes are genetically inferior, thats why the clean toilets". "Caste-system is NECESSARY to maintain, social balance & order"
"Kshatriya's or some castes are powerful and we have the warrior blood and that's why we are on the top" .... 4/n
4) Signalling Caste pride- Now you may wonder why such content may be offensive. Some Savarnas even argue, "what is wrong with us being assertive about our community our pride, even Dalits do the same".
Sorry but it's not that same thing. The difference is that between white supremist and black people asserting & finding the pride and confidence they have been deprived of. 6/n
Also when Bahujans call out brahminism or brahmins, it is not offensive because, they are only challenging the school of thought/system and the people that uphold such a system, that has deprivation them of their dignity, that oppresses and marginalizes them and even puts their lives in danger on an everyday basis. 7/n
The above point , also brings into the question the religious angle, particularly, Hinduism, which sanctions this oppressive & dehumanizing social order. (Not that other religions Indian Islam/ Indian Christianity, Sikhism dont have caste system, but it is not religiously sanctioned, but socially learnt. Picked up from the dominant religion of the region)... 8/n
So when Bahujans critique the Hindu religion and it's proponents, that sanctions such a social order, it cannot be deemed hindu-phobic, religious-hatred, Hurting religious sentiments, because their religious sentiments is rooted in our oppression, dehumanization, marginalization. The religion sanctions the disgust UC's feel for dalits whom they treat as untouchable in various ways even today.
For eg. The idea that Brahmins were birthed from God's head, Kshatriyas from the shoulder,. .. 9/n
Vaishyas from the thighs, and Shudras from the foot, to serve the varnas above them. (Dalits are out of the system completely). Such ideas are rampant in the Brahmanical (or Hindu) literature such as -Dharmasutras, Manusmritis etc. This is how the caste system and by association, marginalization of some castes, is central to the religion of Brahmanism (a.k.a Hinduism). 10/n
Intersection of caste & misogyny:
So while casteism is one thing, there is also sexism and casteist Misogyny in India, where by Dalit/Advasi women being at the worst recieving end. On twitter, such casteist and misogynistic slurs are used to shut down or harrass dalit women activists.
This usually is of the nature of making these insults graphically about female private parts and sexuality to shame and embarrass dalit women. 11/n
The problem with such type of content- casteist Misogyny, is that it's mostly in regional languages (Tamil & Hindi). Which may make it harder to moderate it. Egs for this are- Saying/implying dalit women are raped because their bodies are dispensible and the most "impurest". Or combining caste slurs with Misogynist slurs. 12/n
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