Villages, Women, and the Success of Dairy Cooperatives in India: Making Place for Rural Development

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Cambria Press, 2009 - Business & Economics - 267 pages
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India's cooperative dairying program is widely celebrated as an example of successful rural development, yet the meanings of this success have been understood mainly through the pronouncements of national and international development agencies. Within such official narratives, there has been relatively little engagement with the geographies of dairy development, both its place-specific productions through political contests, availabilities of labor, and distributions of agricultural resources, and the unevenness of its outcomes across rural India. This absence is even more surprising given that village-level cooperatives comprise the foundation of India's dairy development program, and the work of women within rural households is continuously invoked as an integral part of the dairy work. This book extends and enriches current understandings of cooperative dairying in India to show both its value to rural communities as well as the limitations of its participatory structures. Combining comparative and ethnographic approaches, explanations for the diverse outcomes of cooperative dairying are provided from the perspective of the people and places directly involved in the everyday reproductions of rural development. This book contributes to existing understandings of rural development and rural geographies in four significant ways. First, by following histories of development from their local origins to their national and international appearances, the global genealogies that are usually attached to development are rendered more complex. Second, by connecting cooperatives to place, the ways in which participation in development reflects local struggles for power and, hence, are structured through local inequalities, is revealed. Third, by linking dairying and agriculture, the continuing importance of resource distributions in shaping the outcomes of rural development is highlighted. Finally, the crucial role of household divisions of labor in the success of village dairy cooperatives is explicated through showing how struggles over the meanings of rural women's work become key to enabling household-level participation in dairying. This book will be of interest to scholars in a wide range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary fields, including geography, sociology, anthropology, rural studies, development studies, gender studies, and regional studies of India.
  

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Contents

Introduction Seeking Success Finding Farmers
1
Questions for Cooperative Dairying
3
Development Villages Identities
7
Beyond Success and Failure
8
Constructing the Village
16
Small Farmers and Agrarian Politics
22
Gender and Rural Development
27
Comparisons and Stories
31
Local Politics of Participation in Cooperative Dairying
127
From Crossbred Cows to Cash Management of Milk Flows
129
Debating Crossbred Cows
130
Supporting Crossbred Cows in Mahdol
134
Refusing Crossbred Cows in Saundara
137
Timings and Technologies
141
Measuring Milk
142
Transporting Milk
145

Space and Place
35
Comparisons and Case Studies
36
Subjects of Storytelling
40
Outline of the Chapters
43
Colonial and Postcolonial Histories of Dairy Development
49
Colonial Connections
50
Constructing the Patidar Caste
51
Patidars and Peasant Politics
56
Dairy Development
58
Politics and Technology in Anands Cooperatives
59
Cooperative Dairying as a National Model
61
International Funding for the Replication of Cooperatives
65
Liberalization
72
Cooperative Dairying Beyond the World Bank
75
Traces of Traveling Villages Linking Spatial and Social Arrangements
77
Between the Fields and the Town
78
Spatial Divisions and Social Identities
79
At the UrbanRural Boundary
83
Land Reforms
85
Marriage Circles
87
Agricultural Land and the River
91
Spatial Divisions and Social Identities
92
A Flood and the PatidarRajput Alliance
99
Questioning the New Village
102
An Adivasi Sarpanch
103
Preparing Ground for Dairy Development
105
Local Struggle Over Dairy Cooperatives Political and Economic Meanings
107
The Value of Mahdols Daily Cooperative
109
Against Private Traders
111
Conflicts Between Patels
113
Networks Beyond the Village
116
Saksham Capable Farmers of Saundara
117
The Uncertainty of Local Markets for Milk
118
Dairying Knowledge and Political Skills
122
Village Cooperatives in Wider Agrarian Politics
125
The Many Meanings of Profit
148
Links With Agriculture in Saundara
152
Local Consumption of Milk
154
Alternative Models of Dairying
157
Goat Ownership in Saundara
159
Flows of Milk and Power
161
Mixing Dairying and Agriculture Irrigated Land and Draft Animals
165
Agricultural Resources and Cooperative Membership
166
Land and Membership in Mahdol
168
Mahdols Irrigation Cooperative
170
Land Irrigation and Membership in Saundara
173
Importance of Bullocks
175
Diversification of Livelihoods
177
Saundaras Sand Quarrying Cooperatives
179
Cooperative Dairying as Mixed Farming
182
Between Homes and Fields The Diversity of Womens Work
185
Official and Critical Perspectives on Women and Dairy Development
187
Dairying Work and the Household Economy
189
Limited Options for Womens Development
193
Womens Work in Mahdol
196
Womens Work in Saundara
202
Limits of Womens Participation
211
Management and Members in Mahdol
212
Farmers and Laborers in Saundara
214
Gender Bases of Dairy Development
218
Conclusion Rethinking Successful Development
221
Reasserting Village Spaces and Identities
222
Linking Agriculture and Dairying
224
Successful Development as Womens Work
226
The Future of Cooperative Dairying
227
Notes
229
References
241
Index
261
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About the author (2009)

Ann Grodzins Gold is Professor of Religion and Anthropology at Syracuse University.

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