ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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A-Way with Their Wor(l)d-Rural Labourers through the Postmodern Prism

A-Way with Their Wor(l)d Rural Labourers through the Postmodern Prism WHAT originally started out as a review of two recently published collections about south Asian history and society [Haynes and Prakash 1991 and Prakash 1992] offers a timely opportunity to comment on the impact and implications of what purports to be an entirely new approach to the study of agrarian change, and the role in this of peasants and workers in general and unfree rural labour in particular.1 At times during the immediate past it has seemed as though development theory about agricultural labour has imploded, a consequence of on the one hand economists (for example, Srinivasan 1989) who reduce it to an epiphenomenon of mathematics, and on the other non-economists who question the very existence/possibility of development itself.2 Into the latter category falls postmodernism, which propounds something akin to a form of Cultural individualism', or the politico-ideological equivalent of bourgeois economic individualism, and which

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