Untouchability — The Doctor and the Saint: Caste, Race, and Annihilation of Caste

This book was first published as an introduction by Arundhati Roy for an annotated edition of Ambedkar’s pamphlet Annihilation of Caste in 2014. It is now republished as a book of its own to reach a wider audience. Though slim at 124 pages Roy packs her arguments well and a reader goes away with a good understanding of the pervasiveness of Caste in India and the difference in approach between Gandhi and Ambedkar to solve the plight of the Untouchables { now called Dalit and slightly erroneously ‘Scheduled Caste’ in India}.

To say that Roy does not agree with Gandhi’s approach is an understatement. She writes ” Democracy hasn’t eradicated caste. It has entrenched and modernised it.”

I highly recommend this book. Roy writes well and succinctly. For a fuller understanding of Gandhi, Ambedkar and Untouchability I recommend Indian critiques of Gandhi edited by Harold Coward.

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