Book

Politics of Patronage and Protest

Nandita Prasad Sahai

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780195678963
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081660 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678963.001.0001
Politics of Patronage and Protest

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This book addresses the process of state formation in early modern Rajasthan from the prism of subordinate groups such as artisans. By highlighting the multidimensional interface of the Marwar (Jodhpur) state with its resident artisans, the author discusses the imperatives of caste in the political culture of the period. The book focuses on the unclear boundaries between the binaries of superior and inferior castes, domination and subordination, coercion and concessions, great tradition and little tradition, and passivity and resistance. It also explores artisanal caste dialectics to unravel how caste structures animated artisanal life, both in rural and urban environments. While statecraft required the political mobilization of a popular base, the cultural contours of kingship and rule defined the social responsibilities of the state. These were mediated by the ‘moral calculus’ of wajabi: a continually evolving conception of customs and propriety exercised by both sides. How artisans negotiated these—and resisted when wajabi levels of patronage and exploitation were transgressed—are also discussed. The author’s findings are based on hitherto unexplored petitions (arzees) against the state as well as other documents related to inter-caste and intra-caste legal disputes, folklore, and collective memory.

Keywords: caste; caste domination; subordinate groups; Marwar state; craftsmen; wajabi; artisanal caste; artisanal experience; Jodhpur; caste politics

Book.  286 pages.  Illustrated.

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Table of Contents

The Rathors and the Marwar <i>Desh</i> in Politics of Patronage and Protest

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Artisanal Jatis, Jati Panchayats, and the State in Politics of Patronage and Protest

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Village Artisans, Landed Elites, and the State in Politics of Patronage and Protest

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City Artisans, Merchants, and Urban Administration in Politics of Patronage and Protest

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Escalation in Stresses and Artisanal Responses in Politics of Patronage and Protest

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