Reading India: Selections from Economic and Political Weekly, Volume II (1966-1991)
Gurpreet Mahajan, Surinder S. Jodhka and Ila Patnaik (Eds.)
158 x 240 mm
Year of Publishing
Territorial Rights
Orient BlackSwan

Since 1966, when Economic Weekly formally expanded its mission and became the Economic and Political Weekly, it has been a significant space for critical, constructive and innovative thinking on political, social and economic issues.

Reading India, Vol. II, the second of the three volumes commemorating 50 years of the EPW, brings together a selection of articles from 1966-1991. Divided into three fields of inquiry—the political, social and economic—it presents an analysis of the issues and concerns that dominated this period, and in some ways, shaped the discourse of the following decades.

The first section, dealing with politics, focuses on two concerns of this period - democracy and equality. The essays examine issues related to:

  • political representation,
  • electoral processes,
  • policies of reservation,
  • inter-caste and inter-religious conflict,
  • status of women, and
  • measurement of poverty.

The second section takes up the concerns highlighted by sociologists and social anthropologists:

  • the changing Indian family,
  • rural leadership patterns,
  • economic and social changes taking place in India’s rural economy,
  • affirmative action and the marginalisation of religious minorities.

The final section showcases trends in economic thinking during this period, which questioned the economic policies of the era and shaped the direction and nature of the post-1991 reforms. Together, this collection presents analysis, research and debates that are relevant even today for understanding India.

Gurpreet Mahajan is Professor, Centre for Political Studies, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Surinder S. Jodhka is Professor, Centre for the Study of Social Systems, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Ila Patnaik is Professor, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy (NIPFP).

List of Tables and Figures
List of Abbreviations
Gurpreet Mahajan, Ila Patnaik and Surinder S. Jodhka

1. India’s Political Transition
Rajni Kothari
2. Social Background of the Indian Cabinet
Satish K. Arora
3. Electoral Participation of Minorities and Indian Political System 
Moin Shakir
4. Compensatory Discrimination in Political Representation: A Preliminary Assessment of India’s 30-year Experience with Reserved Seats in Legislatures 
Marc Galanter
5. Social Mobility and Caste Violence: A Study of the Gujarat Riots 
Pradip Kumar Bose
6. Communal Violence in India: A Study of Communal Disturbance in Delhi 
Gopal Krishna
7. Biology and Gender Bias: Some Issues in Discrimination against Women at the Workplace 
Vimal Balasubrahmanyan
8. Measurement of Poverty and Undernutrition 
D. Banerji


9. Changes in the Indian Family: An Examination of Some Assumptions 
A. M. Shah 
10. Strains in Leadership Structure: From Status Group to Pluralism in East UP Village
Hira Singh 
11. Semi-Feudalism or Capitalism? Contemporary Debate on Classes and Modes of Production in India 
Alice Thorner 
12. The Indian Institute of Technology: Do They Contribute to Social Mobility? 
C. Rajagopalan and Jaspal Singh 
13. Transformation of Tribal Society: Integration vs. Assimilation 
K. S. Singh 
14. A “Harijan Elite”? The Lives of Some Untouchable Politicians 
Oliver Mendelsohn
15. Women’s Studies: New Perceptions and the Challenges 
Vina Mazumdar and Kumud Sharma
16. The Communalising of Punjab, 1980-85 
Dipankar Gupta 
17. The Ideology of Population Control 
Mahmood Mamdani 
18. Migration, Urbanisation and Interregional Inequality: The Emerging Sociopolitical Challenge 
Amitabh Kundu 


19. Controls and the Current Situation: Why Not Let the Hounds Run? 
Arun Shourie 
20. Indian Development Strategy: Some Comments 
Jagdish Bhagwati and T. N. Srinivasan 
21. Industrial Growth in the 1980s: Emerging Policy Issues 
Vijay L. Kelkar and Rajiv Kumar 
22. MNCs and Export Development 
C. K. Prahalad 
23. On Benefits of Tapping Foreign Portfolio Investments: An Indian Perspective 
Vihang R. Errunza 
24. Financial Scenario of the 1990s: Agenda for Reform 
N. A. Mujumdar 
25. Federal Fiscal Transfers in India: Performance of Six Finance Commissions 
M. Govinda Rao 

Notes on the Contributors
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