Write short notes on: Subaltern history - History and Political Science

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Answer in Brief

Write short notes on:

Subaltern history

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  1. Subaltern means the ‘bottommost ranks’ and subaltern history developed from the idea that history should be written from the bottommost rank of people in the society. This idea was developed by the Italian historian Antonio Gramsci.
  2. The seeds of subaltern history are supposed to be found in Marxist historiography. 
  3. One of the important sources of writing subaltern histories is folklore. 
  4. The Indian historian, Ranjit Guha, played a major role in establishing subaltern history as an important academic school of historiography.
  5. Prior to him, similar thoughts were expressed by Mahatma Jyotirao Phule and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar. 
  6. Mahatma Phule drew attention to the exploitation of women, Shudras, and atishudras done under the name of religion. In his book, Gulamgiri, Mahatma Phule unfolded the history of the shudratishudra community. The terms shudra and atishudra indicate the bottommost ranks in the caste system.
  7. Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar wrote about the role of people belonging to Dalit castes in shaping the various cultural and political aspects of India which was neglected in colonial and nationalistic historiography. The issues faced by the Dalit caste are mentioned in two books ‘Who Were the Shudras’ and ‘The Untouchables', written by Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar.
Concept: Indian Historiography in the Post-Independence Era
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