The anthropologist Akhil Gupta, in his widely acclaimed book Red Tape, argues that the Indian state has been responsible for about two million avoidable deaths each year. His argument is that this is the outcome of structural violence, and most immediately because programs intended to help the poor are subverted by the procedures of Indian bureaucracy. The argument of Harriss’ talk is that the problem of poverty should rather be viewed in terms of injustice, and the case put is substantiated through an analysis of recent innovations in social policy, including the Food Security Act.
John Harriss is professor of international studies at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. A social anthropologist, he has undertaken extensive research in India on a wide range of problems, including agrarian change, poverty, industrial labour, civil society and the middle class.
This event is co-sponsored by the South Asian Studies Program in International Programs, the Public Policy Center, and the UI College of Law Center for International Finance and Development.
This event is free and open to the public. For more information and special accommodations, contact Meena Khandelwal at firstname.lastname@example.org or 319-335-2496.