Class Distinctions old and new

Gangs of Wasseypor shows a mix of the new world order with that of old world india. What I find old-school is the intent and class devisions that have been around in India for centuries. In order to better understand these classes I believe it is important to have a background knowledge of their beginnings. The beginnings could come from Indian rule back from even more historic occupations of foreign leaders and through previous religious control. This old school india cast system was the foundation for class devision in India and set people up within a system of oppression. This system was later refined through British control and the effect of globalization in the modern world. What still exists of this system could be the foundation for the varying degrees of class seen in the show.

What I would like to point out in the show is the interaction of this old school class system in contrast to the new system of classes seen in Gangs of Wasseypour. Old school caste systems were implemented at birth and would follow an individual throughout their life. It was very rare to ever transition from one class to another. In the show we see actual transition between classes for a few of the characters including the main character Sardar. We also see that Sardar is corrupted by this class change and in the end ultimately leads to evil deeds. It would have been seen as negative to change classes in India in the past, although today it is seen in both a negative and positive light. With the introduction of neoliberalism we see this new era of economic modernization and mobility that allows for individual empowerment through work and effort, but we also see this disruption of class movement and the negative effects this can have on an individual.

We also see in the movie this enlightenment of the lower classes. Those that have less behave in an objectively more moral fashion. We have seen this in almost all the movies we have watched throughout this class and it is interesting to see the transition that takes place in Sardar when he reaches higher classes. The higher he climbs the more corrupt he becomes. I wonder what the author was depicting in this class transition and what was his ultimate goal. In any case I think this enlightenment speaks to the everyday individual and makes Gangs of Wasseypour a sequel to some of Hollywoods more gangster epics.


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