Rise of the Plebeians? The Changing Face of Indian Legislative Assemblies

This book traces the changing social profile of the elected representatives of Indian states and, in turn, points to an uneven democratisation of the regional political class. In view of the crucial role that caste plays in state politics in India, the book examines how India’s caste-based social diversity gets translated into politics by tracking the individual trajectory of 16 states since the 1950s to the present times. It focuses on one dominant parameter — the caste background of the elected representatives in state legislatures, i.e., Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs), even as it factors other instrumental indicators such as their occupation, gender, age, and education.

One of the first comprehensive studies of the sociological patterns of Indian political personnel at the state level, the work will be of interest to scholars of political science, modern political history, sociology, South Asian studies as well as the general reader.

Mukulika Banerjee
Yogendra Yadav

Christophe Jaffrelot

I: The Hindi Belt towards Social Engineering
1: The Marginalisation of the Savarnas in Uttar Pradesh?
Jasmine Zérinini-Brotel
2: Bihar: The New Stronghold of OBC Politics
Cyril Robin
3: The Uneven Rise of Lower Castes in the Politics of Madhya Pradesh
Christophe Jaffrelot

II: The North-western Pattern
4: Legislative Elite in Punjab: A Socio-political Study
Ashutosh Kumar and T. R. Sharma
5: Towards Jat Empowerment in Rajasthan
Christophe Jaffrelot and Cyril Robin
6: Gujarat: When Patels Resist the Kshatriyas
Kiran Desai and Ghanshyam Shah

III: The Reign of Dominant Castes in the Deccan
7: Maharashtra or Maratha Rashtra?
Rajendra Vora
8: Legislators in Karnataka: Well-entrenched Dominant Castes
Sandeep Shastri
9: Two Dominant Castes: The Socio-political System in Andhra Pradesh
Anne Vaugier-Chatterjee

IV: Tribal States?
10: Jharkhand: Between Tribal Mobilisation and the Rise of the OBC
Cyril Robin
11: Tribals, OBC, Reformist Movements and Mainstream Politics in Chhattisgarh
Samuel Berthet

V: Where the Upper Castes Resist
12: The Resilient Bhadralok: A Profile of the West Bengal MLAs
Stéphanie Tawa Lama-Rewal
13: Socio-economic Background of Legislators in Kerala
G. Gopa Kumar

VI: The Domain of Proportionality
14: Himachal Pradesh: The Well-established Domination of Majoritarian Upper Castes
Ramesh K. Chauhan, S. N. Ghosh and T. R. Sharma
15: Changing Face of Delhi’s Politics: Has it Changed the Face of the Political Representatives?
Sanjay Kumar

VII: The Tamil Exception: The Subalternist Tradition
16: Caste and Beyond in Tamil Politics
Jean-Luc Racine

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