‘Good women should not claim a share in the inheritance, even if they have no brothers. …’ Notions such as this have, in their own way and over time, given the women in the Santal Parganas the resolve to wrest what is rightfully theirs. This is a powerful book in the way in which it unfolds the lives and anxieties of Santal women in the two villages of Dumka district, Jharkhand. From the very beginning, adivasi women come alive through separate life histories.
They span different situations and social patterns but all of them relate to rights in landed property, and their own troubled identities in the backdrop of harsh living conditions, social discrimination and lack of state support. Land for the Santal women is not a mere economic resource. It stands for security, social position and identity, and in this men have a distinct advantage. Soon after, writing in a personal vein, the author unfolds how these anxieties of the Santal women resonate her own.
The author traces the relationship between Santals and their land from historic times to the modern era when they have access to both the modern legal system and their own customary laws. She also examines the role of external agencies in this struggle— government administrative bodies, non-governmental organizations and political leaders. As modern influences crowd out traditional mores the author asserts that development is not always a benign process of social advancement but a highly political struggle for re-negotiating power relations between men and women, and among social groups. Based on rich ethnographic material, this sensitive book lays bare the reality of being an adivasi and an adivasi woman, in all its nuances, in the modern globalized world.
The book presents an analysis of contemporary labour politics in India’s informal economy. Following increased integration in global economic networks, India’s informal sectors, in some parts of the country, have expanded drastically over recent decades and are employing an increasing number of the country’s working population.
Drawing on detailed ethnographic accounts of three textile industries in Tamil Nadu, collected during two and a half years of fieldwork between 1995 and 2000, the author describes everyday labour activism, explores the character of trade unionism and individualized forms of resistance, and depicts the political culture of the shop floor. Interesting case studies illustrate how labour politics have been shaped both by the social mobility of some communities and the increased feminization of some occupations.
As America tried to absorb the shock of the 9/11 attacks, Muslim Americans were caught up in an unprecedented wave of backlash violence. Public discussion revealed that widespread misunderstanding and misrepresentation of Islam persisted, despite the striking diversity of the Muslim community. Letting the voices of 140 ordinary Muslim American men and women describe their experiences, Lori Peek’s path-breaking book, Behind the Backlash, presents moving accounts of prejudice and exclusion. Muslims speak of being subjected to harassment before the attacks, and recount the discrimination they encountered afterwards. Peek also explains the struggles of young Muslim adults to solidify their community and define their identity during a time of national crisis. Behind the Backlash seeks to explain why blame and scape-goating occur after a catastrophe. Peek sets the twenty-first century experience of Muslim Americans, who were vilified and victimized, in the context of larger sociological and psychological processes.
This is the only book of its kind on India in Economic Geography. According to a reviewer, ‘there are some strong GIS systems, and there are strong spatial databases. This book is the first time these have come together in a satisfactory fashion.’
A singular contribution of Social & Economic Profile of India lies in the quality of its presentation. A very complex and a very wide range of data and analysis has been put forward with remarkable clarity and in a very reader friendly way. This state of the art data and analysis gives an almost complete picture of the socio-economic conditions of India in just 173 pages consisting of 84 colour-coded maps with corresponding text in colour. This book is the work of great scholarship but made accessible to a wide section of readers. It tells the story of what India has achieved since 1991. The subjects covered are of enormous public interest and also extremely useful for the framing of public policies. This book is equally indispensable to all the state departments of the government and to Indian companies wishing to invest in particular areas as well as foreign corporate organisations that wish to invest in India. It goes without saying that the researcher will find this comprehensive body of data and analysis very useful. Anyone wishing to go deeper into a particular problem has been directed to go to the relevant sources.