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Differentiation, polarisation and confrontation in rural Bangladesh

Jahangir, D. K. (1976) Differentiation, polarisation and confrontation in rural Bangladesh. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



This is a study on the processes of differentiation, polarization and confrontation in a specific peasant society. Two villages of Bangladesh formed the setting. The differentiation process is the outcome of the development of capitalism in the rural areas. But capitalism, in the Bangladesh context, has a double colonial background the British and the Pakistani colonial periods. Both in varying degrees hastened and regressed the development of capitalism, shaping development in the colonial context and influencing the process of capital accumulation in the rural areas. Again, capital accumulation is structured within a precise mode of production and the political and economic nature of the state specify the dimension and the structure of the modes colonial, petit mode of production geared for industrialization. In this fashion, class structure emerges in the village and as a social stratum, it reacts in a different way within the national capitalist development. Since capitalist development is uneven due to the colonial background, it produces two interlinked but contradictory effects. Firstly, it generates class differentiation within the peasantry and shapes the polarization process. Secondly, it determines the placement of both the peasant classes within the structure of society and of agriculture within the national economy. This placement is significant, because it effects the class struggle: confrontation. Thus the village is differentiated, and the various classes are structurally aligned both on the rural and on the national terrain. With the emergence of class come the various dimensions of social life: economic, political and ideological factors intersect, within the field of differentiation, class conjoins the actions of different structures. Class is an effect of the structures and class practices reveal the relations of opposition. Thus in a social formation, various alignments depend on the control of and access to the mode of production, While the rich peasants compete for control of the structure, their competition takes factional shape. 'hen others challenge the structure, the challenge becomes class struggle. Whereas the rural rich are structurally aligned with the national bureaucracy and the dominant political parties, the poor peasants are organized locally by the underground Left, They challenge the existing national power structure from a class position, from a local base. This local challenge characterizes the class struggle and pinpoints its fragmentary nature. This study, therefore, is about the differentiation process in a specific context and an examination of how the differentiation process expands the potential area of tension and dissatisfaction, thus shaping the forms and intensity of confrontation.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:1976
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:15 Jul 2013 14:43

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