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Dr. Suraj Yengde is one of India’s leading scholars and public intellectuals.

Academic & Intellectual

Harvard & Oxford Scholar

Dr. Yengde is currently a W.E.B. Du Bois Fellow at Harvard University. His prior appointments were Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School, a non-resident fellow at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research, and was part of the founding team of the Initiative for Institutional Anti-Racism and Accountability (IARA) at Harvard University.

Dr. Suraj Yengde is also a DPhil candidate at the Faculty of History at the University of Oxford.

He has studied on four continents (Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America) and is India’s first Dalit Ph.D. holder from an African university (University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg).

Originally from Nanded, India, he is an International Human Rights attorney by qualification from India and the UK.

Dr. Yengde is a leading world scholar on the topic of caste.

Developing a Critical Theory of Dalit & Black Studies

Currently, he is involved in developing a critical theory of Dalit and Black Studies.

His article in Public Culture entitled, “Dalit in Black America: Race, Caste, and the Making of Dalit-Black Archives“, theorizes “sibling solidarity” through Dalit and Black archives.

His cover story for the Caravan magazine addresses the important question of ‘Race, Caste and what it will take to make Dalit Lives Matter?’. The article explored dimensions of Dalit and Black relationships and history in the United States and India. It is the first extensive treatment of the Dalit-Black question.

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  • Dr. Cornel West applauding to Dr. Suraj Yengde
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde and Dr.Cornel West in conversation
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde listening to Dr. Cornel West
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde and his grandmothers

His work with the philosopher Cornel West has received global attention and calls for unity between African Americans and Dalits.

Author & Columnist

Award-winning Author

Dr. Yengde is a prolific multilingual writer. He is the author of the bestseller, Caste Matters (2019) and a co-editor of the award-winning anthology with Dr. Anand Teltumbde, The Radical in Ambedkar: Critical Reflections (2018).

Caste Matters was a bestseller named the “Best Non-fiction Book of the Decade” by The Hindu. The book’s Malayalam translation won the Kerala state award for translation. The Marathi translation is in the third edition under one year of publication.

The book has been translated into three languages, with four more in progress. Caste Matters was a finalist for the Sahitya Akademi Yuva Puraskar, 2023.

  • Dr. Suraj Yengde in front of pile of articles

Dr. Yengde published over 150 academic and non-academic articles.

Columnist at The Indian Express & ArtReview

Dr. Yengde is a columnist at the Indian Express running the only caste-centric column anywhere in the world.

He inaugurated a popular column called ‘Dalitality’ at the Indian Express, currently the only column in print media to have Dalit-centric opinions.

He is also a columnist with ArtReview bringing the perspective of Dalit art and creativity to the world. 

In addition, he wrote a monthly column entitled “Ambedkarwaad आंबेडकरवाद ” in the Marathi language for Daily Loksatta दैनिक लोकसत्ता.

Dr. Suraj Yengde has been published in:

al jazeera

Activist & Public Figure

Dr. Yengde is a transnational Dalit rights activist involved in building solidarities between Dalit, Black, Roma, Indigenous, Buraku and Refugee peoples in the FOURTH WORLD project of marginalized peoples.

His scholarship and activism won him “Dr. Ambedkar Social Justice Award, Canada” (2019), “Rohit Vemula Memorial Scholar Award” (2018), and “Jai Bhim Icon Award” (2022), “Loknete Youth Leader Bhai Vadiya National Award (Academics) (2023).

He is a founder and curator of the Dalit Film Festival (DALIFF), and a co-founder of the Equity in Policy Education initiative started at Harvard.

Speaker & Consultant

Dr. Yengde has delivered over 300 lectures, keynotes at international academic conferences and seminars across the world on the issues of casteism, racism, institutionalized discrimination, diversity and inclusion.

He has offered consultations to the government, non-governmental, corporate and university policy-making bodies on the issues of caste, diversity, human rights, social justice, refugee policy, cross-border migration and organizational strategies for campaigns and advocacy.

  • Suraj Yengde at Daliff
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde sitting in a audience with a microphone in his hand.
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde on a podium
  • Dr. Suraj Yengde speaking

Dr. Yengde as convener of Daliff, activist and public figure fighting for social justice

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  • Caste Matters Delhi Lounge

Moments cought during his speaking engagements across the globe