Critical Caste and Media Studies Part II: Structural Casteism


1. Oppressed caste groups continue to fight back to create “their own” media spaces. For example, Khabar Lahiriya is a marginalised women led media collective in local languages, celebrating its 20th anniversary. Their impressive work resulted in a powerful documentary film called Writing With Fire (produced by dominant caste progressives). Enthused and inspired by this visibility, many well-meaning Dalit journalists wrote thoughtful analyses about the film (and the organisation).
Dutt, Y. (2022, February 14). Writing With Fire’ Offers a Master Class in Journalism. The Atlantic. Retrieved February 22, 2022, from

2. However, Khabar Lahiriya hinted in its statement that the documentary is incomplete and filled with gaze by romanticising a particular marginalised group. Instead, the organisation maintained that Adivasi (indigenous) women, Muslims and semiliterate women all have a place at Khabar Lahariya. This incidence showed that visibilising a Dalit group by dominant caste women progressives may appear to provide allyship to the oppressed groups while it can reinforce existing power dynamics.
Khabar Lahariya. (2022, March 21). 20 years of Khabar Lahariya & The Oscar Story. Khabar Lahariya (खबर लहरिया). Retrieved April 22, 2022, from

3. Representation of caste, inter-caste and endogamy in the Bollywood film industry.
Murti, A. (2020, October 2). Tell Me More: Talking Caste and Marriage With Jyotsna Siddarth, Founder of Project Anti‑Caste Love. The Swaddle. Retrieved April 22, 2022, from
Balagopal, K. (1990). This Anti-Mandal Mania. Economic and Political Weekly, 25(40), 2231–2234.

5. Through computational analysis, this article finds an excessive association between “lower” (sic) castes , victimisation, and social unrest in the news that does not adequately cover the reports on other aspects of their life and personal identity.
Fonseca, A. F., Bandyopadhyay, S., Louçã, J., & Manjaly, J. A. (2019). Caste in the News: A Computational Analysis of Indian Newspapers. Social Media + Society.

Shanmugavelan, M (2021). A proposal for caste-ing out media: Exploring the role that the media plays in ushering in a caste-sensitive society. APC Challenge Series Lecture 2021.
Teltumbde, A (2010). Mass Media: MASSIVE PREJUDICE’. From The Persistence of Caste: The Khairlanji Murders and India’s Hidden Apartheid: Zed Books. pp. 137-149.

6. On caste practices in the Indian media establishments.
Gorringe. H., & Damodaran. K (2014). The Hidden Politics of Vegetarianism: Caste and “The Hindu” Canteen. Economic and Political Weekly, 49(20), 20–22.
Shanmugavelan, M. (2020, November 1). How to write anti-caste solidarity texts. Round Table India.