Paradoxical inclusion of India’s ex-untouchables in New Casteist media

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Media as a site of reproduction of existing social relations and inequality is a significant area of research. This article explores how mainstream print media contributes to an area of entrenched inequality in India: caste-based inequalities and dominant-subordinate power relations. It explicitly examines how Dalit communities, who for centuries were forced to abide by casteist notions of hierarchy, are framed by Indian news media. A comparative approach using content and framing analysis have been undertaken to analyse the news media reports on Dalit discrimination published in the leading English (Times of India) and Hindi newspaper (Amar Ujala) from 2011 to 2014. Conceptualising the data along the lines of framing theory in a transitioning society, this study explores a new-casteist approach to reporting Dalits. The news media reports the Dalit grievances but ignores the complexities of ethnocultural minorities in a transitioning democratic society and involves Dalit passive-fixation and/or demonisation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)863-881
Number of pages19
JournalMedia, Culture and Society
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • Dalits-minorities
  • discrimination
  • India
  • inequality
  • mainstream media
  • media framing
  • transforming representation

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