Two Banks of the Same River?

Ashutosh Varshney

in Anxieties of Democracy

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780198077473
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081745 | DOI:
Two Banks of the Same River?

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This chapter explores social order and entrepreneurialism in India, focusing on some economic contrasts between the North and South. It examines the depth of Southern transformation and identifies the mechanisms of transformation by concentrating on a particular Southern caste, the Nadars. It also considers the commercial implications of an emerging political revolution in a Northern state, bringing a Dalit party to power. Furthermore, it comments on Alexis de Tocqueville’s argument that the settlements on either side of the Ohio river, Kentucky and Ohio, were identical in all respects except for slavery, and that slavery influenced their landscapes of economic dynamism and listlessness. Finally, the chapter analyses lower castes in the North; the divergence between Northern and Southern India in terms of state-level economic growth rates and growth rates in per capita income; growth rates in both rural and urban enterprises; and growth rates of enterprises owned by other backward castes.

Keywords: social order; entrepreneurialism; India; South; North; Nadars; other backward castes; Kentucky; Ohio; economic growth rates

Chapter.  11436 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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