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                                          Book of the Week



The Lace Makers of Narsapur
by Maria Mies

The Lace Makers of Narsapur is a sensitive and groundbreaking study of women at the beginning of the process of globalisation. Maria Mies in this book, first published in 1982, looks at the way in which women are dispossessed by producing luxury goods for the Western market and simultaneously not counted as workers or producers in their fragmented workplaces. Instead they are defined as ‘non-working housewives’ and their work as ‘leisure-time activity’. The rates of pay are far below acceptable levels resulting in accelerating pauperisation and a rapid deterioration in their position in Indian society.

Before the latest ‘economic boom’ in India were a number of processes of dispossession. The dispossession of farmers through the ‘green revolution’ and alongside it, the dispossession of women, the lace makers of Narsapur in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

… a graphic illustration of how women bear the impact of development processes in countries where poor peasant and tribal societies are being ‘integrated’ into an international division of labor under the dictates of capital accumulation. - Chandra Talpade Mohanty

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