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Title: Poverty, growth and stagnation in North Indian agriculture : a comparative study in the political economy of poverty generation in western and eastern Uttar Pradesh in the early 1970s
Author: Sargent, Jean Diana
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 1991
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This thesis is based upon a comparative study of the processes generating rural poverty in the Western and Eastern Regions of the Northern Indian State of Uttar Pradesh round about 1970. For its theoretical underpinning the research uses a mode-of-production approach, characterising the poor Eastern Region as "semi-feudal" while the Western Region is viewed as exhibiting some significant "capitalist" elements. At an empirical level the control by different classes in the two regions of the most important means of production, i.e. land, irrigation and capital is examined, and its effect on output, productivity and incomes assessed within the structure of the different relations of production prevailing in each region. This permits the identification of the poor within the context of the respective class structures in each region and provides a framework within which to examine the dimensions of poverty in Western and Eastern UP. Sample survey data is used to assess both the extent and depth of poverty among the small cultivator and agricultural labourer population of the two regions. Whereas a vast class of poor tenant cultivators formed the bulk of the poor in the East, an indeed of the population of the region, poverty was largely associated with landlessness in the West and confined to a smaller percentage of the population. Detailed data on the consumption of foodstuffs and necessities is then used to construct estimates of the percentage of the population living below the "poverty line" in each region. The results reinforce the findings of the sample survey data and uphold the basic hypothesis of the thesis that the pattern and nature of poverty found in each region reflects the underlying class structure implicit in the different modes of production of Western and Eastern UP during the early 1970s.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral