In this talk, Riri will share their experiences as a Dalit gender nonbinary/nonconforming and gender queer person from a poor family and a village in India. Today they are a PhD scholar and the only member of the Dalit-Trans community in their region who has been able to attain this level of academic success, all of which has come with its share of resisting homophobia and casteism. Through discussing their journey as a painter, student and community organizer, alongside being a scientist, they will highlight what it means to be a member of the LGBTQ community while being Dalit, especially because Dalit queer people and women are targets of state and intimate violence, making this is an issue that demands immediate visibility and action. Riri will also discuss how the COVID-19 pandemic shaped access to housing, public health support, and so on, by furthering existing inequities. Having led to the creation of their collective, The Outcaste LGBTQIA+, we will learn about the work that they have been able to accomplish in supporting their community in a society that is inherently brahmanical, homophobic and transphobic. This talk is also accompanied with an art fundraiser with pieces that speak volumes on Queer and Trans Dalit Futurisms, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, and more!


Sponsored by:


Decolonizing Humanism(?) Initiative at the Center for Ideas and Society, UCR Dance, UCR Religious Studies and Holstein Family and Community Endowed Chair, UCR Performing Difference Working Group, UCLA Center for India and South Asia, UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture

Event Details

  • trisha
  • Shriya Chittapuram

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