ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Feminification of Theory

Feminification of Theory Dipankar Gupta The feminification of theory draws attention to the fact that the postmodern insistence on reading everything as text finds its fullest efflorescence in the domain of feminist studies. Regardless of gender, the postmodern credo encourages a partisanship towards contemporary feminist scholarship and a concomitant downgrading of both theory and conceptual and disciplinary rigour THE postmodernist denigration of theory and of disciplinary grids as

Communalism and Nationalism in Colonial India

Communalism and Nationalism in Colonial India THE emergence of communal identities has been a subject of frequent and intense debate in India. In this context, Gyanendra Pandey's The Construction of Communalism in North India is a very welcome publication. The author skilfully demonstrates how communalism as we know it in India is a modern phenomenon, coeval with nationalism, and an outcome of the colonial age. The manner in which Hindu and Muslim identities were sharpened with respect to each other over the past two centuries are rather nicely delineated.

PERSPECTIVES

Writing about Hindu-Muslim Riots in India Today Gyanendra Pandey The dominant nationalist historiography that insists on the totalising standpoint of a seamless nationalism needs to be challenged not only because of its interested use of categories such as 'national' and 'secular' but also because of its privileging of the so-called 'general' over the particular, the larger over the smaller, the 'mainstream' over the 'marginal

Country-Town Nexus and Agrarian Mobilisation-Bharatiya Kisan Union as an Instance

Many perspectives and analytical opinions can contest for supremacy within the frame of reference of the country- town nexus. This is the strength of this frame of reference. It compels us to think analytically as it draws attention to conflict, integration, struggle and change. It also reminds us that the issues of the fifties are over.

Punjab Communalised beyond Politics

Punjab: Communalised beyond Politics It is now becoming apparent to many Hindus in Punjab that the Sikhs in general have no common cause with the terrorists. The Sikhs too have made it apparent, through their response to Operation Black Thunder, that the extremists do not speak for them. If New Delhi is seriously interested in bringing to an end the sufferings of the people of Punjab then the present popular mood in the state offers it yet another opportunity.

Illegitimate Politics of the Indian State

'Illegitimate' Politics of the Indian State Dipankar Gupta Violation of Democratic Rights in India edited by A R Desai; Popular Prakashan, Bombay, 1986; hard bound, pp xxxi + 624, Rs 350.

Tribal Development in a West Bengal District - Programmes, Structure, and Process

Programmes, Structure, and Process Dipankar Gupta The Integrated Tribal Development Programme was formally launched in 1974 with the Fifth Five Year Plan, This paper, based on the findings of a field study, enquires into the functioning of the ITDP in Birbhum District in West Bengal The author discusses the incongruities in the ITDP administrative structure, the lack of control over resources, the complete absence of popular initiative, the non-involvement of popular bodies, and the complete failure of its monitoring system. The findings of the study also underscore the fact that developmental programmes which skirt around political issues have limited potentialities.

The Communalising of Punjab, 1980-1985

The Communalising of Punjab, 1980-1985 Dipankar Gupta Any attempt to comprehend the problem of contemporary Punjab should begin by first accepting the reality that a new minority consciousness has emerged. In which case neither thesuch as the Sikhs, nor the mere existence of a communal party like the A kalithe specificity of this new phenomenon.

Continuous Hierarchies and Discrete Castes

Dipankar Gupta While empirical studies have disproved the traditional Indological-cum-sociological view of a strict and irrecon- ciliable dichotomy between caste and modern social institutions or practices, the conceptual framework within which castes in India have been understood has received no major reformulation. It is for this reason probably that studies which demonstrate the malleability of the caste structure and beliefs remain at the level of case studies and have not been able to provide an alternative conspectus on the issue of castes at a general level. The purpose of this paper is to suggest an alternative conceptual formulation on castes which can fully integrate many of the empirical findings.

Continuous Hierarchies and Discrete Castes

Dipankar Gupta While empirical studies have disproved the traditional Indological-cum-sociotogical view of a strict and irreconcilable dichotomy between caste and modern social institutions or practices, the conceptual framework within which castes in India have been understood has received no major reformulation. It is for this reason probably that studies which demonstrate the malleability of the caste structure and beliefs remain at the level of case studies and have not been able to provide an alternative conspectus on the issue of castes at a general level The purpose of this paper is to suggest an alternative conceptual formulation on castes which can fully integrate many of the empirical findings. [This is the second part of the paper which is being published in three parts. The third part will appear next week.] II DISCRETE IDEOLOGIES: TALES OF ORIGIN IF ideologies separate the population and, surreptitiously at least, subvert or legitimise the rules of authority then caste ideologies should also contain these elements. Further as castes separate to maintain a distinct notion of their original heritage, ontology becomes an important component of all discrete caste ideologies.

Continuous Hierarchies and Discrete Castes

Continuous Hierarchies and Discrete Castes Dipankar Gupta White empirical studies have disproved the traditional Indological-cum-sociological view of a strict and irreconcilable dichotomy between caste and modern social institutions or practices, the conceptual framework within which castes in India have been understood has received no major reformulation. It is for this reason probably that studies which demonstrate the malleability of the caste structure and beliefs remain at the level of case studies and have not been able to provide an alternative conspectus on the issue of castes at a general level. The purpose of this paper is to suggest an alternative conceptual formulation on castes which can fully integrate many of the empirical findings. [The paper is being published in three parts. The second and third parts will appear in the following weeks.] CONTEMPORARY scholarship on caste continues to be influenced by the concerns of early European scholars who, in addition to being perplexed by this peculiar institution, also pondered over the possibility of India's entry, into the modern age burdened as it was by the incubus of the caste system. India today has entered the modern age, without perhaps adequate streamlining, as the caste system refused to be steam rolled into a distant past.

Caste, Infrastructure and Superstructure-A Critique

Caste, Infrastructure and Superstructure A Critique Dipankar Gupta The question whether it is 'caste' or 'class' that constitutes the primary level of reality in Indian society has been one of the constant concerns of Indian sociology. The two important contending approaches are the 'culturological approach which argues that caste is a primordial reality of Indian society and everything else springs from it; and various 'Marxist' approaches which, while recognising the importance of caste, question the theoretical and historical assumptions underlining the 'culturological' approach. The most lucid and influential exponent of the thesis of caste as primordial reality is the French sociologist, Louis Dumont, A measure of the influence of Dwmont's views can be had in the fact that a Marxist critic of Dumont, Maurice Godelier, in arguing that caste is part of the 'infrastructure', apparently taking a middle position between those who argue that caste is part of the sub-structure and those who argue that is part of the superstructure, ends up finally with views virtually similar to those held by Dumont.

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