Reflections on our Republic Day

Prashant Bhatt's notes

As we finished our weekly multidisciplinary meeting on The Republic day of India (which is also Australia Day) I asked the meaning of “Proletariat” to one of the participants.

Being a non-native English speaker he did not know the meaning of this word.

What does Republic Day of India mean to the millions of Diaspora?

How is their experience common with proletarians? The Collins dictionary defines “proletariat” as the class of  Wage earners esp industrial workers in a capitalist society whose only possession of significant material value is their labour.In ancient Rome it referred to the lowest class of citizens.

On telling this meaning, my friend immediately identified himself as a ‘proletariat’ (with a few smiles) as he has nothing of significant material value except his labour. Maybe, on a later day, we will sit together and tease out the differences and similarities between “subalterns” and “refugees

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