Is This ‘Azaadi’?

Everyday Lives of Dalit Agricultural Labourers in a Bihar Village

Anand Chakravarti

Tulika Books

Is This ‘Azaadi’?

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Pub Date: May 2018

ISBN: 9788193401538

272 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $43.00£34.00

Is This ‘Azaadi’?

Everyday Lives of Dalit Agricultural Labourers in a Bihar Village

Anand Chakravarti

Tulika Books

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This study of the living conditions of Dalit agricultural laborers in Muktidih Village in southwest Bihar throws light on the problems they face in accessing the basic necessities of existence, including food, clothing, shelter, health care, and education. Their tribulations are conveyed through their own testimonies. Bihar is the poorest state in India, where the highest proportion of the population (79.3 percent), live in multidimensional poverty. They experience a range of deprivations, including deficient diet, poor health, and lack of education.

Having shown that the lives of the laborers in Muktidih are part of a much bigger picture, Anand Chakravarti argues that forces based on caste and class located in the wider political economy of Bihar are antithetical toward ameliorating the conditions of those living in poverty. An outstanding example is the reactionary stance of various regimes in Bihar on the question of land reform.

Part I (Chapters 2 to 5) covers the situation as the author found it in 2001, and Part II (Chapters 6 to 9) covers the same issues from 2009 to 2015.

About the Author

Anand Chakravarti is former professor of sociology, University of Delhi. He is the author of Contradiction and Change: Emerging Patterns of Authority in a Rajasthan Village (1975) and Social Power and Everyday Class Relations: Agrarian Transformation in North Bihar (2001).