Rogaly, Ben, Coppard, Daniel, Rana, Kumar, Rafique, Abdur, Sengupta, Amrita and Biswas, Jhuma (2003) Seasonal migration, employer-worker interactions, and shifting ethnic identities in contemporary West Bengal. Contributions to Indian Sociology, 37 (1-2). pp. 281-310. ISSN 0069-9667Full text not available from this repository.
This article tells of changing social and spatial identities in the countryside of con temporary West Bengal. It draws on a study of interactions between those seeking wage work in agriculture and the people trying to recruit them. We find a continuing and nested process of both self-identification and categorisation. Unconscious as well as conscious ethnic affinities are consolidated and changed. At the same time, identities are used instrumentally by workers to make the outcome of negotiations less demeaning, and by employers to bargain more effectivelyfor the workforce they need. The context is one of the emergence of capitalist production relations in agriculture, presided over by a coalition government led by the Communist Party of India (Marxist). The newly pros perous agriculture has been a source of wealth for capitalist employers, reinforcing constructions of difference in relation to the migrant workers they employ. At the same time, many employers are attracted by the prospects of urban,jobs and life-styles and invest in their children's education. Migrant workers show a similar ambivalence, being attracted by the potential earnings and consumption possibilities arising out of being employed in the West Bengal 'rice bowl', and simultaneously repelled by the dangers they associate with the place.
|Schools and Departments:||School of Global Studies > Geography|
|Depositing User:||Ben Rogaly|
|Date Deposited:||06 Feb 2012 15:17|
|Last Modified:||30 Nov 2012 16:57|