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The Experience of Poverty - fighting for respect and resources in village India

By: T Beck

Practical Action Publishing

Paperback | Jan 1994 | #37230 | ISBN: 1853392189
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £15.95 $21/€18 approx

About this book

Focuses on the strengths of poor people, rather than their weaknesses, and challenges development programme managers to offer more effective assistance to poor people in their fight for respect and resources.


Part 1 Poor people love to eat fish. Part 2 "Beyond enumeration" - the construction of poverty in 19th-century Britain and 20th-century India: introduction; the construction of poverty in 19th-century Britain; measurement and morality - Charles Booth and Joseph Rowntree; solutions to poverty and regulation of the poor; poverty measurement in India; contemporary poverty measurement and "poverty-line language"; the construction of the poor in contemporary political science; the story so far. Part 3 The dimension of human agency: introduction; entitlement and capability theory as an alternative to poverty measurement; people's history and agency; E.P. Thompson, agency and experience; the concept of agency; the concept of experience; Thompson and moral economy theory; understanding poor people's priorities and knowledge; the perspective of the poor from contemporary South Asia; the saga continues.... Part 4 West Bengal - the case study area: introduction; geography, agriculture and population in Bengal and West Bengal; historical and political background to Bengal and West Bengal; the agrarian structure in West Bengal; politics and agrarian reform in West Bengal; conclusions. Part 5 The villages and the study: how the study came to be done and how it was carried out; background to the case study villages; land operation and employment in the three villages; economic categorization; conclusions. Part 6 "There may have been some benefits from the new farming, but I haven't seen any" - agricultural development and land reform in the study villages: the "green revolution" in South Asia; the green revolution comes to Fonogram; land type and land use in the Fonogram area; cropping patterns and adoption rates in the "boro" crop seasons, 1986-7 to 1988-9; who gained most from the green revolution?; absentee landlordism; land sales and land mortgaging; "there may have been some benefits from the new farming..." - benefits to the landless and perceptions of the poor; social change and the green revolution; land reform in the Midnapore case study villages; conclusions. Part 7 Surviving against the odds in the case study villages - everyday strategies and priorities: introduction; who are the poorest?; access to the natural resource base and common property resources; poorest people and food; sharerearing of livestock; poorest people and assets; conclusions. Part 8 "The rich don't help the poor and they never did" - power and the poorest. Part 9 Death comes to poorest households. Part 10 Rich people like to eat fish and throw poor people the bones.

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