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Elite Politics in Rural India
Political Stratification and Political Alliances in Western Maharashtra


Part of Cambridge Studies in Social and Cultural Anthropology

  • Date Published: November 2007
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521040693

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About the Authors
  • A study of the system of political stratification and the pattern of political alliances in rural Western Maharashtra. Based on fieldwork in a large village, a nearby market town and taluka headquarters, and political institutions in the surrounding countryside, the first half of the book is a full examination of the phenomenon of regional dominance originally described by Adrian Mayer. The second part is a detailed study of the pattern of political alliances from village to district level. Dr Carter's central concern is with the manner in which the pattern of political alliances is shaped by political stratification. Tracing the relationships between these alliances and such factors as political stratification, political arenas, caste, class, and kinship, Dr Carter demonstrates that much Indian political behaviour which has been regarded as irrational or as a sign of an immature, tradition-bound and unstable system may be understood more usefully as a rational response to the conditions of political action in rural India.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2007
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521040693
    • length: 220 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 153 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.337kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    Part I. Introduction:
    1. The problem
    2. The region: Girvi, Phaltan Taluka and Western Maharashtra
    Part II. Aspects of Political Stratification:
    3. Political arenas and the political class
    4. Caste status and distribution
    5. Land, labour, credit and share capital
    6. Descent groups and affinal networks
    Part III. Political Alliances:
    7. Vertical alliances
    8. Horizontal alliances
    9. Alliances and political stratification
    10. Conclusions
    Map of main Girvi settlement area

  • Author

    Anthony T. Carter, University of Rochester, New York

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