Essay and Art Contest on Civil and Human Rights

Essay and Art Contest on Civil and Human Rights

Prize money $1,000 Last date: March 30, 2023
About the contest – Dalit Solidarity Forum in the USA, Hindus for Human Rights, Indian American Muslim Council, and Tasveer are pleased to present the second annual Essay and Art Contest on Civil and Human Rights

The theme for this year’s contest is: Intersections Between Caste Discrimination and Anti-Black Racism.

Deadline: 12 pm EST on Wednesday, March 30th, 2022

Prize: $1,000 for winners, $500 and $250 for runner-ups

Across South Asia and the diaspora, persons from oppressed-caste communities such as Dalits continue to face various forms of discrimination, oppression, and societal segregation. In India, caste discrimination is illegal, and affirmative action policies have enabled social, political and economic mobility for some who come from Dalit families. Yet, caste oppression persists and persons belonging to Dalit communities remain socially, economically, and politically marginalized.

Similarly, in the United States, despite the legal successes of the Civil Rights movement and the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement, race-based inequities continue to impact Black communities and other people of color in myriad ways.

From Dr. B.R. Ambedkar to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., activists fighting identity-based marginalization, exclusion, and oppression have long seen parallels between the struggles against caste discrimination and anti-Black racism.

Through either an essay or a work of art, we invite students to engage with these intersecting struggles.

Questions that participants can consider include (but are not limited to):

What are some similarities between caste stratification in South Asia and the diaspora and racial segregation in the US?

When and how have campaigns to combat these injustices intersected?

Does your own identity and experiences with caste shape how you think about social justice issues in the US?

How can social justice movements combat caste and race-based discrimination?

Eligibility for Essay and Art Contest on Civil and Human Rights:

We welcome submissions from students in grades 6-12 who identify as belonging to the South Asian diaspora, defined broadly. Students from all religious backgrounds are welcome. We invite students whose identities intersect in meaningful ways with Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, or Sri Lanka, and the United States. This includes members of the diaspora whose families hail from the Caribbean, Fiji, Singapore or Malaysia, or countries in Africa, for example, as well as students who identify as multi-racial.

South Asian students in grades 6-12 living outside the United States are welcome if they feel connected to or inspired by the U.S. civil rights struggle and contemporary movements against racism and caste oppression.
To Apply and for the format and other guidelines click here

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