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The Caste System in India

            Around the world, countries and nations have established methods for organizing their citizens into different social groups. Specifically in India, they have had set up, for many centuries, a way of shaping their country into social strata, called caste systems. "The caste system is a form of hierarchical, kin-based social organization of great antiquity found in South Asian societies," however, with the changing times, the normal traditions are changing (Merchant). Caste systems were and are a major basis of unity, strife, stratification, politics, and social dominance. The caste system is still a significant part of Indian culture today because even though each caste follows their specific regulations, some of the rules have been altered to create a more efficient society, however there have been consistent norms that have stayed the same throughout the years.
             Within the caste system are layers, or groups of people, that each have their own rules and regulations they must abide by. Highest up are the Brahmins, or the priests, whose duty includes translating and interpreting various texts into Sanskrit. Next are the Kshatriyas who serve as the warriors. After them are the Vaisya who deal with trading and owning land. Below them, at the bottom, are the Shudras, who do all the labor, and are considered the peasants. Also represented in the community, however not included in "the fourfold system are the 'untouchables,' now commonly referred to as Dalits" who take care of the mindless tasks" (Caste). The untouchables were made in order to assist inter-caste children who needed taking care of. Because each caste has specific guidelines that they must accept and pursue, punishment, while the severity depends on the crime or misuse of rules, is given out, as similar to everywhere else in the world.
             While the caste system is still prominent in India, some alterations have been made to the long-term norms and traditions.

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