Caste in Stone? Exploring Caste and Class Dimensions of Conservation Displacement in Central India

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Abstract

This article explores the caste and class dimensions of the local resource politics of conservation displacement. Through long-term study of a conservation displacement site in central India, it interrogates how alliances and rivalries contoured along historical class-caste contestations result in differential patterns of recovery from “green grabbing” and exclusionary conservation. It is argued that contestations within and between subaltern social groups, traditional dominant castes and newly upwardly mobile peasant castes are geared towards cornering resource flows associated with the local welfare/developmental state. Given severely limited avenues of gainful employment for the rural poor in the neo-liberal era, access to the local gatekeeping economy shapes trajectories of accumulation and decline in the context of India’s new land wars.

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Kabra, A. (2020). Caste in Stone? Exploring Caste and Class Dimensions of Conservation Displacement in Central India. Journal of Contemporary Asia, 50(5), 785–805. https://doi.org/10.1080/00472336.2019.1696877

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