People of India - Introduction

People of India - Introduction

Product ID: 9462

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Author: K S SINGH
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Year: 2002
Language: English
Pages: 342
ISBN/UPC (if available): 019564441


This volume is an introduction and a summing up of the prestigious People of India project launched in 1985 to generate a brief, descriptive anthropological profile of all the communities of India, studying the impact on them of change and the development process, and linkages that bring them together.

This book is part of the prestigious people of India (POI) project launched in 1985 to generate a brief, descriptive anthropological profile of all the communities of India, studying the impact of them of change and the development process, and the linkages that bring them together.

This revised edition of the first volume in the series serves not only as an introduction but also as a summing up of this project. Field studies of sixty-two communities were conducted afresh and most chapters revised to incorporate the new information generated. The book deals with the trends and latest findings, provides a comprehensive overview, and addresses issues that have been raised since the first publication of this widely reviewed and discussed series, through which it was possible to identify, locate and study 4635 communities throughout India.

Acclaimed as an ethnographic endeavor more ambitious than any other in the world, the POI project has made India one of the leading countries in terms of information and knowledge about its people, and will influence social science research and culture policy for many years to come. It is the first step towards building up a comprehensive information system on the people of India, and reflects the vibrant process of the transformation of the Indian people.

It will be invaluable reading for students, researchers, planners and administrators, sociologists, anthropologists, and other scholars.


Rarely has a project as important as this form the national point of view and from the scholarly point of view been pursued with such determination, vigor, attention and speed.
—M N Srinivas

These volumes were assembled by an extraordinary man as part of a remarkable project. In recent years the Anthropological Survey of India has become his atelier from which an endless series of texts has emerged bearing his imprimatur. K S Singh, the recently retired director general of the Anthropological Survey of India, is one of a long tradition of administrators turned anthropologists, having started his career in the Indian Administrative Service. . .

The circumstances of the project’s inception help make sense of these volumes’ peculiar qualities – social idealism mixes with an uneasy legacy of Victorian social science against the backdrop of a statistical giganticism. The stress on the accumulation of a vast body of data will clearly appeal to the project’s bureaucratic funders. . .

Future evaluations of the People of India project will depend on whether it comes to be used as a summation or, as K S Singh himself hopes, another starting point for further investigations.
—Christopher Pinney, The Times Higher Education Supplement

‘People of India’, the country’s first nation wise ethnographic study, and probably the largest anywhere in the world [aims] to create a map of the “human surface” of India . . .Indeed, the survey has provided empirical evidence to smash some of the stereotypes of Indian society for good.
—Tara Patil, New Scientist


Foreword by M N Srinivas
Preface to the Second Revised Edition

A Note on the Series
An Explanatory Note on the Maps

Conceptual Framework and Methodology

Ecology, Space, Communities, and their Components

Languages and Scripts

Biological Variation in Indian Populations

Social Organization

Resource-use, Occupation and Development

Interaction, Sharing and Linkages


A. The Scheduled Guidelines
B. Part I: Coverage of Communities in Culture Zones/ Districts/ Towns or Cities/
Part II: Coverage up to 1996
C. Part I: Status of Informants
Part II: Women Investigators in Informants
D. Part I: Progress by Year
Part II: Expenditure
E. Part I: Calendar of Events
Part II: Workshops, Meetings, Discussions and Lectures
F. Publications
G. The National List of Communities
H. Categories of Communities and Their Distributions
I. Communities and Their Components
J. Part I: Languages Spoken and Number of Communities, According to
Language Family/ Sub-family
K. Part I: Occupation and Communities
Part II: Categorization of Occupations

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