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A Relational Approach to Durable Poverty, Inequality and Power

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  • David Mosse

Abstract

The article argues for what can be called a 'relational' approach to poverty: one that first views persistent poverty as the consequence of historically developed economic and political relations, and second, that emphasises poverty and inequality as an effect of social categorisation and identity, drawing in particular on the experience of adivasis ('tribals') and dalits ('untouchables') subordinated in Indian society. The approach follows Charles Tilly's Durable Inequality in combining Marxian ideas of exploitation and dispossession with Weberian notions of social closure. The article then draws on the work of Steven Lukes, Pierre Bourdieu and Arjun Appadurai to argue for the need to incorporate a multidimensional conception of power; including not only power as the direct assertion of will but also 'agenda-setting power' that sets the terms in which poverty becomes (or fails to become) politicised, and closely related to power as political representation. This sets the basis for discussion of the politics of poverty and exclusion.

Suggested Citation

  • David Mosse, 2010. "A Relational Approach to Durable Poverty, Inequality and Power," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(7), pages 1156-1178.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:46:y:2010:i:7:p:1156-1178
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2010.487095
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:wdevel:v:95:y:2017:i:c:p:43-54 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Joyeeta Gupta & Courtney Vegelin, 2016. "Sustainable development goals and inclusive development," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 433-448, June.
    3. Howson, Cynthia, 2013. "Adverse Incorporation and Microfinance among Cross-Border Traders in Senegal," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 199-208.
    4. Simon O'Meally, 2014. "The Contradictions of Pro-poor Participation and Empowerment: The World Bank in East Africa," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 45(6), pages 1248-1283, November.
    5. Isabelle Guérin & Bert D'Espallier & G. Venkatasubramanian, 2015. "The Social Regulation of Markets: Why Microcredit Fails to Promote Jobs in Rural South India," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 46(6), pages 1277-1301, November.
    6. Paul Shaffer, 2015. "Two Concepts of Causation: Implications for Poverty," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 46(1), pages 148-166, January.
    7. Annim, Samuel Kobina & Mariwah, Simon & Sebu, Joshua, 2012. "Spatial inequality and household poverty in Ghana," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 487-505.
    8. Sophie King, 2014. "Cultivating political capabilities among Ugandan smallholders: good governance or popular organisation building?," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series 19314, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
    9. Fischer, Klara, 2016. "Why new crop technology is not scale-neutral—A critique of the expectations for a crop-based African Green Revolution," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(6), pages 1185-1194.
    10. Sam Hickey, 2012. "Thinking about the politics of inclusive development: towards a relational approach," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series esid-001-12, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
    11. repec:bla:devpol:v:35:y:2017:i:3:p:337-348 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Fikret Adaman, 2012. "Power Inequalities in Explaining the Link between Natural Hazards and Unnatural Disasters," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 43(1), pages 395-407, January.
    13. repec:hal:journl:hal-01023795 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Oyvind Eggen, 2013. "Making and Shaping Poor Malawians: Citizenship Below the Poverty Line," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 31(6), pages 697-716, November.
    15. Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai, 2014. "Rethinking spatial inequalities in development: the primacy of politics and power relations," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series esid-029-14, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
    16. Swann Bommier & Cécile Renouard, 2014. "On Equity in India's Water Supply Public-Private Partnerships," Working Papers hal-01023795, HAL.
    17. Scarlato, Margherita, 2012. "Social Enterprise, Capabilities and Development: Lessons from Ecuador," MPRA Paper 37618, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Bommier, Swann & Renouard, Cécile, 2014. "On Equity in India's Water Supply Public-Private Partnerships," ESSEC Working Papers WP1411, ESSEC Research Center, ESSEC Business School.
    19. Resmi Bhaskaran & Dev Nathan & Nicola Phillips & C. Upendranadh, 2013. "Vulnerable workers and labour standards (non-)compliance in global production networks: home-based child labour in Delhi’s garment sector," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series ctg-2013-16, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
    20. Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai, 2017. "The Political Economy of Regional Inequality in Ghana: Do Political Settlements Matter?," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 29(1), pages 213-229, January.
    21. repec:bla:devpol:v:35:y:2017:i:2:p:161-195 is not listed on IDEAS

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