Claiming the State: Active Citizenship and Social Welfare in Rural India
Gabrielle Kruks-Wisner will discuss her book, Active Citizenship: Claim-Making and the Pursuit of Social Welfare in Rural India. This book explores the everyday practices through which poor citizens of the world’s largest democracy make claims on the state for social welfare. Drawing on an original survey of 2210 households as well as 500 in-depth interviews in 105 villages of Rajasthan, she argues that citizen action is state-induced and socially produced, shaped by direct encounters with and observations of public officials, and by the accounts of others that circulate within – and beyond – communities. More porous social and spatial boundaries, which enable exposure beyond the immediate community and locality, increase the likelihood and breadth of claim-making by developing citizens’ knowledge, expectations, and linkages to the state.
Co-sponsored by the Institute for South Asia Studies.