Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.595882
Title: Rural labour arrangements in West Bengal, India
Author: Rogaly, Ben
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 1994
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Abstract:
The aim of this thesis is to explain the existence and coexistence of diverse hired labour arrangements in two contrasting localities in rural West Bengal (India). Hired labour arrangements for seasonal migrants are included in the analysis, the methods for which are drawn from a review of the contractual arrangements literature. One study locality, in Bardhaman District, was characterised by double-cropping of paddy facilitated by groundwater irrigation, the other, in Purulia District, by rainfed paddy cultivation. The structure of landownership was skewed - more so in the Bardhaman locality. Daily employment records were kept by ninety-two sampled households over two seasons. In each locality six different indigenous types of hired labour arrangement were identified. Analysis of the rationales for the existence and coexistence of these labour arrangements and of the variation within each type confirmed the embeddedness of the terms and conditions of labour hire (including those for migrant labour) in the land-holding structure, in ideologies of gender and caste, and in party political allegiances. Possibilities for and constraints on hiring out labour in particular arrangements are explained in part by the logic of deployment of household labour to unwaged reproductive and productive work, which is also socially embedded in the same way. The thesis thus sets a new agenda for research. It questions the received wisdom on rural labour exchange in India: i) that villages tend to have just one wage rate for 'casual' labour determined by supply and demand alone, ii) that stylised labour arrangements (eg 'casual' and 'attached') are appropriate occupational classifications for individuals and households, and iii) that rural labour is immobile. If the coexistence of diverse labour arrangements is to be explained, more, careful microstudies are required, so that a typology of socio-economic, political and agro-ecological contexts can be developed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.595882  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Manpower policy ; Rural ; India ; West Bengal
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