The Cultural Economy of Land

Rural Bengal 1860-1940

Suhita Sinha Roy

Edited by Mallarika Sinha Roy

This book is an attempt to bring out a multilayered pattern of rural life-world by, tracing on the one hand, major social and political changes, and, on the other hand, the everyday life of Birbhum district at a specific historical juncture.
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The Cultural Economy of Land is situated at two crossroads of agrarian history. The first is the cyclical seasonality of agriculture and the linear progressive time of technological innovation and political transformation; and the second is that of the economic and cultural meanings associated with land. Land acquires various dimensions beyond property, tenure, revenue, and inheritance if maps are connected with knowledge systems; land productivity with food habits, gender relations, and patterns of migration; landscapes with modes of irrigation and railroad construction; cropping patterns with festivals; village territoriality with social relations of power.

Mallarika Sinha Roy

Mallarika Sinha Roy is assistant professor at the Centre for Women’s Studies, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Suhita Sinha Roy

The late Suhita Sinha Roy taught ancient history; history of China, Japan, and the Far East; and history of international relations during the first half of the twentieth century in different institutions in India. Her abiding interest in subaltern history became her inspiration to work on the everyday life of the peasantry of Birbhum district where she had grown up.