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Why caste still matters in India

Why caste still matters in India | Ms. Postlethwaite's Human Geography Page | Scoop.it

INDIA’S general election will take place before May. The front-runner to be the next prime minister is Narendra Modi of the Bharatiya Janata Party, currently chief  minister of Gujarat. A former tea-seller, he has previously attacked leaders of the ruling Congress party as elitist, corrupt and out of touch. Now he is emphasising his humble caste origins. In a speech in January he said 'high caste' Congress leaders were scared of taking on a rival from 'a backward caste'. If Mr Modi does win, he would be the first prime minister drawn from the 'other backward classes', or OBC, group. He is not the only politician to see electoral advantage in bringing up the subject: caste still matters enormously to most Indians."


Via Seth Dixon
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Melissa Marie Falco-Dargitz's curator insight, November 23, 2014 12:11 PM

Caste will take more than a few generations to lose its social privilege/oppression. The verbal history passed from parent to child enforces the idea of caste, even when it has been done away with by law. This social hierarchy effects business, marriage, and politics.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 3:00 AM

While in some ways India has been quick to adapt to the 21st century such as in the technical industry and even in the loosening of ridged marriage practices this caste system has remained. This system of societal stratification has persisted and as this article explains plays a large role in the politics of India today. The castes also play a role in employment and marriage in determining who can do what work and who it is socially acceptable to marry.

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, April 8, 9:18 PM

I agree that until there are more jobs created for the people of India, the slower the caste will fade out.  Over time it will fade out eventually, but the creation of jobs and more social interaction will help the process move along faster.  

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Burka Avenger

"Burka Avenger is a new Pakistani kids' show about a mild-mannered teacher who moonlights as a burka-clad superhero."


Via Seth Dixon
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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, November 5, 2014 8:25 PM

unit 3

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, November 19, 2014 12:45 PM

There is something to be said about how film and the media can be used as an effective tool to touch on broad cultural ideals. On a related note, I will be attending a conference soon in Boston on social studies education and one of the seminars I will be going to is how to use SciFi movies in the classroom. Ideals like equality, fighting oppression and free speech are timeless and span many cultures, in Pakistan, the Burka Avenger is that area's media outlet to discuss key social topics to young people.

Louis Mazza's curator insight, April 6, 4:25 PM

A modern day Batman/Superman, Burka Avenger, with great graphics and an in-depth plot. The television shows the Pakistanis children watch are the same type of shows that I watched growing up, and the shows that the modern day children of today’s youth are watching. The cross-cultural relationship seems so different, but at the roots it is the same. The kids in this show have friends, pets, enemies, a hero, a conflict; everything that an American television show would feature.  Whether the kids are facing a bully, a school closure from a villain, or a life peril from another villain, there undercover school teacher is there ready and willing to save the day. Everybody needs a hero to look up to, so this show is great for the Pakistani youth. 

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The Ship-Breakers

The Ship-Breakers | Ms. Postlethwaite's Human Geography Page | Scoop.it
In Bangladesh men desperate for work perform one of the world’s most dangerous jobs.

Via Seth Dixon
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Lora Tortolani's curator insight, April 8, 9:00 PM

I like the part of this article that asks "In the West you don’t let people pollute your countries by breaking up ships on your beaches. Why is it OK for poor workers to risk their lives to dispose of your unwanted ships here?”  This statement is so true and of course is related to the money that is saved by outsourcing the job of breaking down the ships.  Not only does it save the West money, but it saves the land by not bringing the pollution upon us.  There has to be a way to do this job more environmentally friendly and making it safer for the workers.

Joshua Mason's curator insight, April 22, 10:46 AM

I always wondered what happened to ships after they were taken out of service, I've seen images of airplane grave yards out west, filled with 747's and other planes just rotting away. Though some of those planes are huge, ships are definitely larger and take up more space. 

 

The waste of the ships is incredible. The hull may be the visible part of the vessel but on the inside, the ship is filled with toxic waste from its days of transporting oil. Asbestos is also laden within the older ships since health laws were not as strict in pre-1980 world.

 

It is easy to see how Bangladesh became the ship deconstruction capital of the world. Toxic material disposal in the Western world is incredibly expensive since it is done correctly. Bangladesh has cheap labour and the laws in regards to the disposal of toxic waste are loose. Where a company in the West may haul in less of a profit because of the cost of disposal, Bangladeshi companies are able to take in a one million dollar return on a five million dollar investment. 

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, April 22, 6:53 PM

With the health risks and pollution that is ruining the soil aside, this seems like a great buiseness and way to make money for many people who are unqualified to do anything else.  Its almost like the people working in factories and in the steel mills during the beginning of the industrial revolution.  Many jobs were hazardous for your health and your surroundings, but it is a way to make a living.  I can see why it happens in this part of the world as apposed to others due to the low wages these people are working for, thus making this even more profitable to the people running the show.

 

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Tea-plucking machines threaten Assam livelihoods

Tea-plucking machines threaten Assam livelihoods | Ms. Postlethwaite's Human Geography Page | Scoop.it
Tea plucking machines are threatening the livelihoods of tea pickers in the Indian state of Assam, reports Mark Tully.

Via Seth Dixon
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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 2014 4:42 AM

This article details how globalization is damaging the high-end tea industry of India. The Assam company, which produces high quality tea, is under pressure to mechanize their 100% human tea production due to competition. Vietnam, Kenya, and even other Indian companies produce significantly cheaper tea due to their willingness and ability to cut costs by using machines and paying their workers less. A cultural stigma toward tea workers is making hiring difficult for Assam, compounding the problems with competitors and forcing a switch to mechanization which will produce an inferior product.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 1, 2014 2:51 PM

This seems to work well for both the tea growers and the workers. The workers are compensated well and they have a job for life and the tea that is picked is of the highest quality. Unfortunately, most places on the planet go with the cheapest price, not the best quality, so I do not know how much longer this arrangement will be feasible.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 8:51 PM

In my town, we got rid of the old trash receptacle bins and in place we have one huge trash bin and one huge recycling bin. This has cut down the jobs immensely because now a machine just picks up the large bins. This is the same thing thats happening in India. There is now a machine that can do the humans jobs and will most likely take over for the tea picking people. Its unfortunate, but its how the world works.