Community Warriors: State, Peasants and Caste Armies in Bihar
This book dissects the politicization of caste massacres and provides a provocative portrayal of the private caste armies operant in so-called 'barbaric-Bihar'. Mediating between predatory politicians and radical Maoists, Kumar argues that these caste armies act as both a surrogate arm of the state and a violent defender of their community's self-perceived purity. His focus on vicious agrarian conflicts and the increasing powerlessness to deal with these conflicts challenges transcendental notions of the state's autonomy and the legitimacy. Community Warriors is anchored in historically and politically constructed notions of identity, power and ethnic allegiance. The book's lucid narrative style facilitates a seamless passage through the sociocultural history of post-independence Bihar and unravels the disturbing aspects of the march of democracy in this much feared and also promising 'heart of India'. Kumar addresses the issues of the process of democratization, ethnic conflict, state power, social movements, Dalit politics and peasant unrest, providing a key to understanding contemporary India.
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agrarian agricultural assembly elections backward castes Belaur Bhojpur Bhojpur district Bhoomi Sena Bhumihar Brahman Bhumihars Brahmans Brahmeshwar Singh cadres Cambridge caste peasants Central Bihar Chief Minister community warriors conﬂicts CPI(ML CPI(ML)-Liberation criminal Dalits Delhi democracy Democratic Rights district electoral emerged factional ﬁght ﬁrst Gandhi Gaya Government hierarchy ideological India inﬂuence janata jehanabad jehanabad district Kayasthas killed Kisan Sangh Koiris Kurmis labourers landless landlords leader leadership Lorik Sena lower castes Maithili major Mandal Maoist groups Mishra mobilization Naxal movement Naxalites Naxals Nitish Kumar North Bihar ofﬁcial organization parliamentary elections Patna People’s Union police political parties Political Weekly politicians politics in Bihar power struggles Prasad private caste armies private caste Senas radical Rajputs Ranvir Sena Rashtriya janata Dal reﬂected region rural Sena activists Sena chief Sena’s Sharma signiﬁcant Sinha so-called social society Sunlight Sena Thakur University Press upper castes village violent Yadav zamindars