A Boatman in Benaras

Power in traditional Indian society is based on a form of social division called caste-based stratification. The castes are based on occupations and perpetuated through family lines. The lower castes remain the most underprivileged.

In Benaras, one of the world’s oldest cities with the longest running funeral pyre in history, weavers and boatmen practice each other’s trades interchangeably depending upon the seasons and availability of work.