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Centre for Creative Ethnography

Locating Dalits in Disasters

An Anthropological Study of Dalits in the Context of Recurrent Flooding in Bahraich District of Uttar Pradesh

Prashant Khattri secured funding from the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), New Delhi, India, to conduct a two-year study (January 2024-2026) into Dalit experiences of flooding. The aim is to understand the lived experiences of Dalits in a caste village in Eastern Uttar Pradesh in India bordering Nepal, an area that is annually inundated by floods. The study explores issues of marginality and assertion of rights and claims against the backdrop of disasters, using standard and creative methods.

Using creative methods, ballads and folk songs that depict the plight of the Dalit community will be collected during fieldwork. In addition, other mediums of creative expressions related to people’s aspirations and sufferings will be explored, including visual representations by local Dalit artists.

A School building inundated by flood water in Bahraich. Photo taken in 2016.