Anthropology in the East: Founders of Indian Sociology and Anthropology
Patricia Uberoi, Nandini Sundar and Satish Deshpande (Eds.)
140 x 216 mm
Year of Publishing
Territorial Rights
Permanent Black

Anthropology and sociology have long histories within India. Yet, with the exception of fieldwork experience, there is neither much material on the institutional and material contexts of these disciplines, nor on the practices of pioneering anthropologists and sociologists in shaping the intellectual contours of their craft. 

The present book, on the major figures in Indian anthropology and sociology, fills an important gap. While the sociology/anthropology of India is not purely a national phenomenon (significant scholars and centres for the study of India exist outside its borders), and while Western theories have been important factors, it is demonstrated here that local influences—theoretical, institutional, and national—and local personalities played a major role in shaping the field.

The volume spans approximately a century of life and work, from the late nineteenth to the late twentieth century, and includes scholars with extremely varying research trajectories.  However, it also shows the threads that bind these scholars: for example, their common concern with nation-building, social reform, and  the value of science.

Because it combines biography, institutional history, and critical assessment in its account of some of the most major Indian anthropologists and sociologists, this book will interest all anthropologists, sociologists, and South Asianists, as well as all interested in intellectual history and biography.

Patricia Uberoi is Professor of Sociology at the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi, and also Honorary Director of the Institute of Chinese Studies, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi.  She has taught sociology at the University of Delhi and the Jawaharlal Nehru University, and has been co-editor of Contributions to Indian Sociology since 1992.  She has published extensively on gender, family, kinship, and popular culture with reference to both India and China.

Nandini Sundar is Professor, Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics. She has previously worked at Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi. She has authored Subalterns and Sovereigns: An Anthropological History of Bastar, 1854-1996 (1997) and co-authored Branching Out: Joint Forest Management in India (2001). Her areas of interest include political and legal sociology, social history, development theory and practice, and intellectual history.

Satish Deshpande is Senior Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi, and was formerly Reader at the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi.  His areas of interest include caste and class inequalities; contemporary social theory; the history and politics of the social sciences; and South–South intellectual interactions.  He is the author of Contemporary India: A Sociological View (2003) and several journal articles.  He is also the book reviews editor of Contributions to Indian Sociology and associate editor of International Sociology.

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