Using the political highlighter

Rule of the United Progressive Alliance II in India (2009-2011)

“The correlation between political stability and economic development is poor or even negative.”

[Under British rule, political violence was most prevalent in the] “economically most highly developed provinces.”

[After independence, violence remained more likely in the industrialized and urban centers than] “in the more backward and underdeveloped areas of India.”

Bert F. Hoselitz and Myron Weiner, “Economic Development And Political Stability In India”, Dissent 8 (Spring 1961)

First electoral defeat for Communist Party of India (Marxist) in West Bengal since 1977

“In fifteen Western countries, the communist vote was largest in the most urbanized areas of the least urbanized countries. In India, the communists were strongest in Kerala (with the highest literacy rate amongst Indian states) and in industrialized Calcutta, not in the economically more backward areas.”

Samuel P. Huntington, “Political Order And Political Decay”, Political Order In Changing Societies (Yale University 1968)

“In a fundamental sense, the areas of Marxist strength are the most Westernized and those with the highest per capita income and education.”

William Howard Wiggins, Ceylon: Dilemmas Of A New Nation (Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1960)

Urbanization and political instability

“The rapid influx of large numbers of people into newly developing urban areas invites mass movements.”

William Kornhauser, p. 145 (italics in original); Seymour Martin Lipset, Political Man (Garden City, N.Y., Doubleday, 1960), p. 68 (italics in original)

Pranati Datta, Regional And Sub-regional Population Dynamic, European Population Conference, 2006

In 1961, there was a 26.41% increase in the urban population despite a drop in the decennial growth rate between 1951 and 1961 by 36.24% whereas the population in rural areas decreased by 30.53%. A similar trend is next observed in 1991: 36.19% – increase in urban population; 21.76% – drop in decennial growth rate between 1981 and 1991; 6.25% – decrease in rural population.

(Data: R. B. Bhagat, Urbanisation In India: A Demographic Reappraisal, Maharshi Dayanand University, 2002)

0 thoughts on “Using the political highlighter

  1. Kaushik Anand

    Some points are counter-intuitive- specifically about urbanization and political instability. My sense is that the data is cherry picked and misleading. We can get a counter point if GDP growth rate vs urbanization is plotted. TN for example is highly urbanized and this correlates to GDP growth.

    Similar to the presence of Maoists in developed areas. There are no Maoists in Gujarat, Mumbai, Chennai or Bangalore. They are in lowly developed eastern India.

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    1. Muks

      If GDP vs. urbanization is plotted, it will most probably show an increase in the output of the population that has shifted to the urban milieu. However, the quotes have to do with not what happens after urbanization occurs but what happens during the process itself.

      The Maoist movement is rooted in rooted in the teachings of Mao Zedong, who in turn was anti-Revisionist and therefore believed that Stalin’s solution for the USSR was the best implementation of Marx’s ideas. While the Maoists ARE in lowly developed eastern India, it can be fairly said that they are opposed to all forms of industrialization and urbanization. Furthermore, their history in India is rooted to their opposition to the Trotskyist (working-class emancipation + mass democracy) Communist movement in West Bengal – especially “industrialized Calcutta”. They did not develop AFTER urbanization set in in southern or western India but BECAUSE urbanization set in in Communist WB.

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