We Are Not Your Monkeys
The word dalit comes from Sanskrit. The stem literally means ‘to break open‘ or ‘to split open‘. But the underlying meaning mainly goes back to the revolutionary and social reformer Mahatma Jotirao Phule, living in the 19th century. He used the term to describe the outcastes and untouchables (members of the lowest caste) with. It was not until the seventies of our century that the followers of the Dalit Panther Movement made it a common word. They saw dalit as an express remembrance of their age-long oppression. Still today, the term is popular with Indian protest movements. In his works, director Anand Patwardhan examines the political, religious and social identity of the modern India. In we are not your monkeys he lets the poet Daya Pawar analyse the Ramayana legend, dealing with the God Ram and his wife Sita, from the perspective of the dalits.