Traditional industry in the new market economy: the cotton handlooms of Andhra Pradesh

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Sage Publications, Mar 13, 2001 - Business & Economics - 169 pages
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Traditional industry in India is seen as both an atavistic survival of the pre-industrial economic organisational structure, out of tune with the demands of a modern economy, and also as the repositories of a heritage of skilled craftsmanship and artistic expression.

This book is an in-depth study of handloom weaving in Andhra Pradesh. Based on extensive fieldwork, it provides an alternative view and a corrective ot this widespread notion that handloom weaving is inherently unviable and non-competitive. In fact, the authors argue, it is a dynamic sector with great market potential given its links with national and international markets.

The book looks at three main agencies involved in this sector the weaver, the master weaver (or trader), and the government. The interactions between them are explored by studying relations of production, the markets and marketing channels. This study is divided into three parts. Chapters 1 to 3 look at handloom weaving in the context of the general understanding of traditional industry, with an overview of the handloom sector at present, along with an outline of government policies for the handloom sector. Chapters 4 to 6 present a detailed picture of the handloom sector in Andhra Pradesh the performance across districts, the reality in the weaving centres, and an analysis of the economic relationships in this sector. Chapters 7 and 8 evaluate the effectiveness of government policy in terms of the performance of handloom cooperatives in the state and the impact of government policy, expenditures and institutional initiatives. The book concludes with the suggestion that the sector needs a policy framework which will give autonomy to weavers' cooperatives to function as economic entities, with the government playing a facilitating role.

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Government Policy and Perceptions

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