Kerala: The Paradoxes of Public Action and Development
Joseph Tharamangalam (Ed.)
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In Kerala: The Paradoxes of Public Action and Development, development scholars explore the paradoxical aspects of Kerala’s development experience. This state, which had emerged as a “model” of Third World development entered the 21st century with the paradoxes in its “development” sharply revealed. The prolonged economic stagnation, mounting fiscal deficits, high unemployment, and social and political atrophy experienced by the state stood in contradiction to its high literacy levels and low infant mortality and birth rates. A growing body of theorists, many of whom have contributed to this volume, have revealed that women and Dalits, and indigenous communities like the Adivasis, have been marginalized and excluded from the social, economic and political “benefits” of the Kerala model. The essays in this volume examine the two-faced nature of Kerala’s public action––its enabling outcome in enhancing social outcome and capability, and its paradoxical negative social, political and economic impacts. Importantly, all the contributors to this book are those who are the ones working in the field.

Joseph Tharamangalam is Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Canada.
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