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Capital, Interrupted

Capital, Interrupted: Agrarian Development and the Politics of Work in India

Vinay Gidwani
Copyright Date: 2008
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 368
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  • Book Info
    Capital, Interrupted
    Book Description:

    With the Patel caste of western India as his central case, Vinay Gidwani interrogates established concepts of value, development, and the relationship between capital and history. Capitalism, he argues, is not based on the operation of a series of laws, but is rather an assemblage of contingent logics stitched together. Capital, Interrupted unsettles understandings of concepts such as hegemony and agency, and, ultimately, rethinks the constitution of capitalism.

    eISBN: 978-0-8166-5657-8
    Subjects: Population Studies

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. INTRODUCTION: Sutures
    (pp. ix-xxvi)

    In 1960, near the start of his academic career, Stuart Hall published an article with the intriguing title “The Supply of Demand.” Extending the ideas of Richard Hoggart and Raymond Williams,¹ Hall presaged the concerns that he was to elaborate in a more famous 1989 article, “The Meaning of New Times,” which many orthodox Marxists read as Hall’s public defection from Marx to Foucault and for which he was severely upbraided in journals such asCapital and Class, New Left Review, New Socialist, New Statesman,andFeminist Review.² “The Meaning of New Times” was read as a disavowal of left...

  4. CHAPTER ONE Waste
    (pp. 1-31)

    On May 14, 1861, Jadunathji Brijratanji Maharaj, a leader of the Vaishnavite Vallabhacharya sect, filed a libel suit in the Bombay Supreme Court against Karsandas Mulji, a Gujarati social reformer and editor ofSatya Prakash(a Gujarati-language weekly), and Nanabhai Rustomji Ranina, the newspaper’s printer. In his petition to the court, the Maharaj charged the defendants Mulji and Ranina with defaming him in an article published in their newspaper on October 21, 1860.¹ The allegations that Mulji and Ranina had made against Jadunathji Maharaj (and other Maharajas of the Vallabhacharya sect) were sensational. He was accused of “immoral practices,” such...

  5. CHAPTER TWO Birth
    (pp. 32-67)

    I had finally convinced Haribhai Bansibhai Patel to give me a tour of the Patelkhadkis¹ in the sprawling village of Ambodi.² This took some convincing because Haribhai now lives with his three brothers and their joint family on the outskirts of Ambodi, in an imposing two-story cement house. They had moved to the house in 1987, he said, to get away from the congestion and filth(gandgi)of the main village. Haribhai gestured around him as we walked through the dank, narrow lanes of the khadki, packed tightly with two-hundred-year-old stone-and-brick houses and the ripe smell of open sewage,...

  6. CHAPTER THREE Machine
    (pp. 68-137)

    Extremely private and urgent:

    Date: 2/2/96

    Respectfully for,

    District CollectorSaheb

    District Collector’s Office


    Subject: Investigation of irregularities in the building of shelters for farm laborers

    Honorable Sir,

    This is to humbly apprise you that approximately sixty houses have been built on both ends of Limbasi village. In this work, requisite materials have not been used. Subsequently, even the wood used has been of an inferior variety and work on the interior is subpar. Initially, in the first phase of construction extremely raw bricks were used in the foundation. Even the associated materials [gravel, cement, etc.] that were applied...

  7. CHAPTER FOUR Distinction
    (pp. 138-183)

    Where there is growth, there is exudation. During my time in Matar Taluka, I was frequently surprised to encounter groups of male villagers who spent large parts of their day lounging on acharpoi(jute cot) in busy gossip, or hunched in small circles, playing cards, with the ubiquitousbeedi(local cigarette) orpaan(betel leaf smeared with condiments) close at hand. Had these village groups been merely seasonal occurrences whose emergence and disbandment corresponded to slack periods in agriculture, then my curiosity about them would have been considerably dimmer. But they were not. The size of the group varied,...

  8. CHAPTER FIVE Interruption
    (pp. 184-232)

    Capitalism is a “one” that is a “many”: a more-than-human concrescence. To be exact, it is a constantly repeating concatenation of uncountable concrescences—different-in-itself in space and time.It has no essence. But it has a structural logic, which is diagrammatic. Let’s call it the “law of value.” Capital is becoming-value. It does not matter how or where. It is utterly disinterested in normativities—forms of life—that differ fromitsnorm of value, unless those forms can be conscripted to its self-expansionary end. Its myriad fractions want, above all, to never rest. To stop is to confront the prospect...

  9. AFTERWORD: Aporia
    (pp. 233-246)

    October 1993: I was at the Tribal Research and Training Centre (TRTC) at Gujarat Vidyapeeth, in the city of Ahmedabad, India, trying to track down the original survey forms from a landmark rural survey conducted by the Gandhian economist J. C. Kumarappa and his team in 1929. The survey of 998 households, in the economically deprived subdistrict of Matar in central Gujarat, resulted in a publication calledA Survey of Matar Taluka in Kheda District.¹ The publication is both a singular early contribution to the emerging field of agricultural economics in India and a stinging indictment of colonial economic policies...

  10. Acknowledgments
    (pp. 247-254)
  11. Notes
    (pp. 255-326)
  12. Index
    (pp. 327-337)