The handicrafts industry in Kerala: blending heritage with economics
India has always been a land of crafts and artisans. Although the country is now moving on the fast track of modern industrial growth modelled on western capitalist economies, the handcrafted production continues to coexist. In some parts of the country the craft tradition is so deep rooted that thousands of people, who possess traditional skills, continue to produce a variety of handicrafts to meet the changing nature of the demand in domestic as well as export markets. This is true especially of Kerala State, which has a rich craft tradition and economic rationale for adoption of labour-intensive techniques of production in view of its acute unemployment problem. Literature on the subject, however, lacks studies based on primary surveys of economic conditions of major handicrafts in the State. Towards closing this gap, this book presents abridged versions of selected study-reports on handicrafts prepared by scholars sponsored by the Kerala Research Programme on Local Level Development (KRPLLD) of the Centre for Development Studies. These reports are presented in the form of case studies on micro-level problems of specific handicrafts and their artisans. A macro-overview of structure, growth and problems of the handicraft sector and socio-economic conditions of artisans based on the analysis of data from secondary sources provides the backdrop for the case studies. The findings of the micro-level analysis of specific crafts, when looked at in the macro-perspective, help in sharpening our overall understanding of the problems of the handicrafts industry and the poor economic conditions of artisans, who still remain the backbone of the handicraft industry.
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An Overview or the Handicrafts Industry
Wood Carving Artisans in Thiruvananthapuram City
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activities Adimaly all-India level Aluva arti artisans in Kerala average Bamboo Corporation bell metal artisans bell metal craft bell metal industry bell metal products beneficiaries Capable Manufacturers census cent centres communities cooperative societies cost Distribution of artisans earnings economic employment Ezhava handicraft artisans Handicrafts Development handicrafts industry handicrafts sector HDCK heritage household handicrafts income India industry in Kerala industry in Mannar institutional interventions Irinjalakuda Kollam Kora Kora grass lakhs large number major marketing mat weaving metal craft industry middlemen moosaris nomic non-beneficiaries occupational mobility operations organisational set-up Pcap pottery Primary Survey private dealers problems product-mix promotional raw materials reed relatively Scheduled Castes Scheduled Tribes screw pine skills Source specific crafts study area supply of raw Table Thiruvananthapuram Thiruvananthapuram district Thrissur Thrissur district tion tional Total traditional crafts units unorganised value-addition wage rate weavers wood carving artisans wooden furniture workers