1st Edition

Activism and Agency in India Nurturing Resistance in the Tea Plantations

By Supurna Banerjee Copyright 2017
    220 Pages
    by Routledge

    220 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    During the period 2000 to 2010, tea plantations in India experienced a crisis and were at the threshold of transformation, framed by conflict and turbulence.

    This book is an interdisciplinary and intersectional work examining the nature of victimhood and agency among women workers on tea plantations in North Bengal, India. The author views tea plantations as social spaces, rather than only economic units of production. Focusing on the lived experiences of the workers from the perspective of their multiple identities, the author uses the everyday as the entry point for understanding the exercise of agency, the negotiation of different spaces, gender roles and norms therein, as well as acts of protest. Agency and its relation to space are seen as continuums: from their everyday, hidden forms to the more overt and spectacular; from conformity and endurance to challenge and protest.

    Offering an understanding of the gendered nature of space and labour, this book examines the post-crisis period by mapping the workers’ narratives about their lived experiences and struggles in the times of economic, political and social tumult in the tea plantations of northern West Bengal. It will be of interest to an interdisciplinary audience interested in Development Studies, Gender Studies, South Asian Studies, Social Activism and Labour Studies.

    1. Introduction

    2. Intersectionality, Labour and Agency: Theoretical Paradigms

    3. Scene Setting

    4. Identity and Belonging through the Lens of Intersectionality

    5. Understanding the Plantations within a Gendered Space

    6. Understanding the Plantation as a Gendered Space

    7. Understanding Agency

    8. Understanding Everyday Activism

    9. Conclusion


    Supurna Banerjee is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Development Studies Kolkata, India. She received her PhD from the University of Edinburgh.