(3,316 words)

In the more narrow sense, untouchability in a Hindu context is typically articulated as a need of purification after having been in physical contact with certain persons. Normally a bath is required in order to regain purity. An early example of such rules can be found in the Gautamadharmasūtra:

"When a man touches an outcaste [i.e. a grievous sinner], a Caṇḍāla [i.e. a person from an unto…

Cite this page
Mikael Aktor, “Untouchability”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Edited by: Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 17 February 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2212-5019_beh_COM_000261>
First published online: 2012

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