To Be Cared For: The Power of Conversion and Foreignness of Belonging in an Indian Slum
To Be Cared For offers a unique view into the conceptual and moral world of slum-bound Dalits (“untouchables”) in the South Indian city of Chennai. Focusing on the decision by many women to embrace locally specific forms of Pentecostal Christianity, Nathaniel Roberts challenges dominant anthropological understandings of religion as a matter of culture and identity, as well as Indian nationalist narratives of Christianity as a “foreign” ideology that disrupts local communities. Far from being a divisive force, conversion integrates the slum community—Christians and Hindus alike—by addressing hidden moral fault lines that subtly pit residents against one another in a national context that renders Dalits outsiders in their own land."
Read an interview with the author on the Association for Asian Studies' #AsiaNow blog.
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2 Caste Care and the Human
3 Sharing Caring and Supernatural Attack
4 Religion Conversion and the National Frame
5 The Logic of Slum Religion
6 Pastoral Power and the Miracles of Christ
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Ambedkar Anbu Nagar anticonversion laws asked auspiciousness basic believed Brahminical caste Celvi cēri chapter Chennai Christ claim congregation context culture CWMG Dalits debt deities described divine dominant drinking elite endogamy example explained fact faith foreign money friends Gandhi God’s Harijan Hindu and Christian Hindu gods Hindu nation Hindu nationalist Hinduism Hindutva household human husband idea identity India intraslum jāti Jesus Kalaivani Kanakam Kashtappattinam lived loan marriage matter means middle-class missionary moral community Muslims neighbors never non-Dalit nonslum one’s Palani Paraiyars Pentecostal political poor practice pray prayer problems referred relations relationship religious conversion residents rich ritual Sagayaraj sense shared Shraddhanand simply slum Christians slum church slum dwellers slum pastors slum religion slum women social spiritual suffering supernatural surrounding slums talk Tamil Nadu things threat tion told trash true Umbrella Preacher understanding understood untouchables van_kan.āvi Viswanath wife woman words worldly worship Yesudasan