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7 - Protesting the state

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2009

Stuart Corbridge
Affiliation:
London School of Economics and Political Science
Glyn Williams
Affiliation:
Keele University
Manoj Srivastava
Affiliation:
London School of Economics and Political Science
René Véron
Affiliation:
University of Guelph, Ontario
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Summary

Introduction

In the past four chapters we have tried to say something about the spaces of empowerment that open up for poorer people in their dealings with government officials and other authority figures around the EAS and primary education provision. In some cases these spaces can be enduring and quite extensive, as we saw in Debra Block, Midnapore. For all that the CPI-M attempts to fill the political society of this Block, poorer men (and some women) are given opportunities to work on government schemes, and they have some say, too, about the running of those schemes and their local public schools. Political society is also quite thick and competitive in Bidupur Block, Vaishali, although as yet the Scheduled Communities have not managed to make much headway against the Yadavs and other OBCs. In Old Malda Block, political society is less open to the voices and interests of the poorest, and spaces of empowerment are harder to detect. Poor levels of literacy and information circulation conspire against the agendas of participatory development and good governance, and such successes as we could report tend to be episodic and sometimes short-lived. Poorer households tend to fare worse here than in Bhojpur or Ranchi, where patrons are often more responsive to their clients.

In the final part of the book we want to extend our terms of reference to include a broader range of political encounters across India.

Type
Chapter
Information
Seeing the State
Governance and Governmentality in India
, pp. 219 - 249
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2005

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