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The Burden of Caste on Social Identity in India

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  • Catherine Bros

Abstract

This paper uses the World Values Survey to investigate the determinants of perceived social status in India. Caste is still the largest determinant, yet not the only one, as income, education and occupation are all relevant factors. However, only unlikely improvements in those economic attributes could offset the burden of being from a low caste or tribe on perceived social rank. This study is part of the literature that shows how the internalisation of prejudice and long-lasting discrimination may have impaired individuals' self-esteem. The results stress the need to account for self-depreciation when assessing the efficiency of affirmative action policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Catherine Bros, 2014. "The Burden of Caste on Social Identity in India," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(10), pages 1411-1429, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:50:y:2014:i:10:p:1411-1429
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2014.940908
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Afridi, Farzana & Li, Sherry Xin & Ren, Yufei, 2015. "Social identity and inequality: The impact of China's hukou system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 123(C), pages 17-29.
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    Cited by:

    1. Subha Mani & Saurabh Singhal & Smriti Sharma & Utteeyo Dasgupta, 2016. "Caste differences in behaviour and personality Evidence from India," WIDER Working Paper Series 060, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    2. Goel, Deepti & Deshpande, Ashwini, 2016. "Identity, Perceptions and Institutions: Caste Differences in Earnings from Self-Employment in India," IZA Discussion Papers 10198, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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