Resisting, With Power
“The more you move away from the centre, the more you become irrelevant”
In this divided and hierarchical world, there are always conflicts leading to the oppression of the underprivileged. Oppressors have all the resources and privileges by their side but the oppressed have one power with them: their right to protest and resist against the injustice they are subject to. These hierarchies exist everywhere in terms of caste, religion, gender, geographical location, etc. It reflects in how we protest, resist and talk about it.
In Indian history, methods like the non-cooperation movement, strikes, dharna, satyagraha, marches, rallies were undertaken. These same methods have been made universal, common to protest. Protest or resistance can happen in a lot of different ways. Do we consider these different ways as acts of resistance or do we focus only on historical and traditional ways of protesting? Do we only consider the resistance of powerful communities as resistance?
So, we should ask the question that which movements have a place in history and which doesn’t? We usually talk and study about ‘Dandi March’ but do we know enough about ‘Mahad Satyagrah’? Do we talk about ‘Ulgulan’? Are we only focusing on those protests which happen at the centre or are we also focusing on the protest which happen away from the centre? Are we only looking at those protests which are done by people who were more powerful in terms of hierarchies or are we trying to look beyond them?
This exhibition tries to create a dialogue around these questions and tries to deconstruct the traditional idea of resistance. The exhibition focuses on the different ways in which people from different communities are resisting in Gujarat. And they are not merely resisting but resisting with power.
Hetal G Chauhan
Dalit Shakti Kendra