Exposing Caste Discrimination in the United States

A Conversation with Phillip Martin and Suraj Yengde

November 16, 2020
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. EST
Location: Online Zoom Webinar

Phillip Martin's multi-part series for The World, “Caste Discrimination in the USA,” explores how the caste system has followed many migrants from India, Nepal, and elsewhere in South Asia to the United States. Caste discrimination impacts thousands of people living in North America, who have no legal recourse to address inherent bigotries and harsh realities that define everyday life for Dalits, or "untouchables." This series hones in on grassroots and parliamentary efforts in the United Kingdom and Canada to establish legal protections for South Asian expats, migrants, and descendants who face caste discriminations in the diaspora, and lessons applicable to the United States. This project is led by Phillip Martin, senior investigative reporter for GBH News and a contributing reporter for PRX’s The World (a co-production of GBH, the BBC, and PRX which he helped develop as a senior producer in 1995).

In this conversation, Phillip Martin was joined by Dr. Suraj Yengde, an award-winning scholar and activist from India who was born into a family of Dalits. Yengde is currently a senior fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School and an inaugural postdoctoral fellow at the Initiative for Institutional Anti-racism and Accountability (IARA) at Harvard University. The two discussed caste discrimination in India, how one overcomes those hurdles to arrive in the United States, and issues of caste, race, and ethnic discrimination in the United States. The conversation was moderated by Rebecca Shah, principal investigator for the Religion and Economic Empowerment Project (REEP) and senior fellow at the Archbridge Institute.

This event was part of the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs collaboration with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

This event was recorded and a captioned video will be posted to this page soon.

related event | Information Session: 2021 Pulitzer Center Reporting Fellowship

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Participants