Social Identity – II

Thinking about his social identity, he realized that it provides him with a lot of advantages socially, but disadvantages professionally.  

Being an upper-caste Hindu, he has social power.  His caste has historically reaped more of societal benefits at the expense of lower castes.  Even though things have changed considerably nowadays, yet purely socially, it could still be better to be a poor upper caste person than be a rich lower caste person.  He doesn’t have to face hard or soft discrimination on the basis of his caste.

Being a male also helps him have social advantage.  World in general and India in particular has been historically unkind to its women folk.  Even in top cities, women face trouble going out alone particularly after a certain time in the evening.  This tends to limit social opportunities for women.  As a male, he enjoys a lot more social liberties.  Even in terms of sexual orientation, being a straight person is more socially acceptable in his context than being a homosexual.

That said, his social advantage impedes his professional success somewhat:  To correct the historical wrongdoings, government has undertaken affirmative action.  People from lower caste and women get preference for admission into top colleges and universities.  They also get quotas for government jobs.  Some may argue that it is unfair if you want to build a meritocratic society.


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