Thursday, December 7, 2017

How do you know that you are in a hierarchical society?

Kaldeidoscope happens to live in a society which is hierarchical. He has studied it in the name of caste, class, prestige and many others. He often visits spaces which are supposed to challenge the assumptions behind the hierarchies. However, does they? The significant question henceforth is whether one can at all withstand the programme installed in the name of socialisation in the phase of child development. Malinowski decades ago mentioned something about the difference between what people say they do and what people actually do! To comprehend and make sense of the difference he mentioned something like participant observation. Participation to such an extent that you can actually write a whole ethnography based on Memory – remember Srinivas in his The Remembered Village – after his field notes were accidentally burnt.

To know the habitus of the people you really don’t always have to have a long years of participant observation. It is possible, even more so, when you slither yourself through a microscopically different habitus carrying a sufficient experience of the underlying structure of the social whole. Hence, while you have read Homo Hierarchicus by Dumont, you also tend to find hierarchies beyond the arrangement of people, but also in the arrangement of objects. For example, caste is casted in our dreams, in ghosts (petni is lower than Brahmadatti), in flower (jaba happens to be a low graded flower), so on and so forth.

However, all of a sudden Kaleidoscope is slithering through organisations which are supposed to question and deconstruct the existing order of things, is ingrained within.

Hence, when the power centre arrives all others stand on their feet. Whenever, some power embodied persons are being felicitated the rest are on their feet. Kaleidoscope, incidentally referred a junior’s name before naming the senior one’s in their joint work he was immediately reminded about who works with whom in the ‘proper’ hierarchical order.

Hence, the mechanism of doing research remains to be the same. From the definition of the delivery of resources, the power equation remains to be the same.

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