Everyday Life in South Asia

Everyday Life in South Asia

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This vivid anthology focuses on the daily lives and experiences of people living in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Firsthand ethnographic accounts portray the ways ordinary people live and make their worlds through growing up and ageing, arranging marriages, exploring sexuality, going to school, negotiating caste hierarchies, practising religion, participating in popular culture, enduring violence as nations are built, and moving abroad to make new lives. Drawing from anthropology, history, religious studies, and other fields, scholars from South Asia, the United States, and the United Kingdom present the diversity of life situations and perspectives in contemporary South Asia. Essays are organised around six themes: the family and the life course; genders; practising religion; social distinctions of caste and class; nation-making; and, globalisation, public culture and the South Asian diaspora. The selections portray peasant girls in rural Rajasthan and advertising industry executives in Mumbai; 'untouchable' sharecroppers and high-caste landlords; intimate, multi-generational families and street youth involved in 'modern' gangs and drugs; South Asian American children of high-powered professionals; and, refugees from violence who have fled abroad only in desperation. The essays on gender move from women in traditional arranged marriages, to women who forego marriage as professional actresses, to men in same-sex relationships, to transgendered hijras. The variety of religions of South Asia are portrayed with essays on Hindu deities and festivals, Muslim story-tellers and singers, Buddhist nuns in remote Kashmir, and a Yolmo shamanic healer. This accessible and engaging book provides an introduction to the region that will appeal to students, specialists, and all readers interested in South Asian culture and social life.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 448 pages
  • 154.94 x 228.6 x 22.86mm | 748.42g
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 22 b&w illustrations, 1 map
  • 0253215218
  • 9780253215215

Table of contents

Acknowledgements; Note on Transliteration; Map Introduction I. The Family and the Life Course Introduction One Straw from a Broom Cannot Sweep: The Ideology and Practice of the Joint Family in Rural North India Susan S. Wadley Allah Gives Both Boys and Girls Patricia Jeffery and Roger Jeffery "Out Here in Kathmandu:" Youth and the Contradictions of Modernity in Urban Nepal Mark Liechty The Role of Suffering in Women's Performance of Paxto Benedicte Grima Love and Aging in Bengali Families Sarah Lamb Memorializing the Self: The Autobiographical Will and Testament of Narayana Guruviah Chetty, Madras City, 1915 Mattison Mines II. Genders Introduction New Light in the House: Schooling Girls in Rural North India Ann Grodzins Gold Family and Gender Systems in Transition: A 35-Year Perspective Susan Seymour Roadwork: Offstage with Special Drama Actresses in Tamilnadu, South India Susan Seizer Nervous Masculinity: Consumption and the Production of Embodied Gender in Indian Wrestling Joseph S. Alter Dosti and Tamanna: Male-Male Love, Difference, and Normativity in Hindi Cinema Ruth Vanita Life on the Margins: A Hijra's Story Serena Nanda III. Social Distinctions of Caste and Class Introduction God-Chariots in a Garden of Castes: Hierarchy and Festival in a Hindu City Steven M. Parish High and Low Castes in Karani Viramma, with Josiane Racine and Jean Luc Racine The Erasure of Everyday Life In Colonial Ethnography Gloria Goodwin Raheja Anjali's Prospects: Class Mobility in Urban India Sara Dickey Seven Prevalent Misconceptions about India's Caste System IV. Practicing Religion Introduction The Hindu Gods in a South Indian Village Diane P. Mines The Feast of Love McKim Marriott The Delusion of Gender and Renunciation in Buddhist Kashmir Kim Gutschow Presence: Yolmo Spirit-Callings in Nepal Robert Desjarlais Tunes Rising From the Soul and Other Narcissistic Prayers: Contested Realms in Bangladesh Jim Wilce V. Nation-making Introduction Political Praise in Tamil Newspapers: The Poetry and Iconography of Democratic Power J. Bernard Bate Outsiders at Home? The South Asian Diaspora in South Asia Gautam Ghosh Why Do Hindus and Muslims Fight?: Children and History in India Nita Kumar Walking Through Violence: "Everyday Life" and Anthropology Pradeep Jeganathan Interviews with High School Students in Eastern Sri Lanka Margaret Trawick VI. Globalization, Public Culture, and the South Asian Diaspora Introduction Cindy at the Taj: Cultural Enclosure and Corporate Potentateship in an Era of Globalization William Mazzarella A Diaspora Ramayana in Southall Paula Richman British Sikh Lives, Lived in Translation Kathleen Hall Placing Lives Through Stories: Second Generation South Asian Americans Kirin Narayan Unexpected Destinations E. Valentine Daniel References Contributors Indexshow more

Review quote

"Everyday Life presents layered images of how the aspirations of the peoples of the region have been shaped and then crushed, only to take on new meaning. It is a readable book that forces the reader to pause and reflect on the strange and yet predictable ways in which history in South Asia has evolved." - Asian Affairs, March 2004show more

Rating details

24 ratings
3.87 out of 5 stars
5 17% (4)
4 54% (13)
3 29% (7)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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