Header menu link for other important links
The marketing of corporate agrichemicals in Western India: theorizing graded informality
Published in Routledge
Volume: 46
Issue: 7
Pages: 1458 - 1476
This article focuses on the young men from agrarian backgrounds who work as field marketing agents for companies like Monsanto in western Maharashtra, India. They promote pesticides, herbicides and other agrichemicals to farmers who often belong to higher castes. My ethnography suggests that the promotion of agrichemicals deploys the idiom of agricultural extension, upsetting India's tenacious social hierarchies on the one hand, and driving corporate profits and indebtedness among farmers on the other. With respect to the subordination of agriculture to industrial capital, I contend that farmers and marketing agents can neither be arrayed against one another, nor is their relation to industrial capital alike. Agrichemicals marketing troubles dichotomous frameworks, such as farmers against industrial capital. Ultimately, I call for re-conceiving political economy in terms of graded informality, where opportunities and constraints for accumulation map onto a gradient, rather than fall on opposite ends of a binary. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
About the journal
JournalJournal of Peasant Studies