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  • Author: Nimmi Kurian
  • Publication Date: 03-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: It is intriguing that despite a liberal economic narrative of borders as bridges, the transHimalayan trader has remained a rather forlorn and forgotten metaphor. This absence has however neither been voluntary nor anticipated but instead can be traced to fundamental flaws in India’s subregional discourse with its bias toward state-led formal institution building. Far from being marginal, the trans-Himalayan trader was in fact the central protagonist, as can be seen from a reading of the social and economic history of India’s borderlands. While this is not an attempt to read back into history a larger-than-life role for the border actor, it is a cue for India’s subregional discourse to imaginatively re-engage with the expertise and rich form of social capital that the transborder trader represents.
  • Topic: Economics, History , Borders, Trade
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia, Himalayas
  • Author: Raphaelle Mathey
  • Publication Date: 06-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales
  • Abstract: Anthropological studies demonstrate that personal values, social relationships and indicators of cultural identity are expressed in a symbolic manner in funeral rites. In Azerbaijan such rites can include as many as ten commemorative events (yas) in the year following the death. These are critically important events in which allegiances are made and broken. During the period of political chaos and economic recession which followed independence, from 1991 to 1996, the yas served as an incubator for a local identity movement. Political stability, beginning in 1996, and the advent of the petroleum era, in the 2000s, transformed the country’s face, reordered the relationships between individuals, and today raise the issue of creating a State and developing a national political project. The study of funeral rites enables one to measure the magnitude of these changes. The evolution of yas reveals new needs of a society in turmoil and reflects the fundamental examination Azerbaijanis are undertaking of themselves, their religion, their European and Oriental identity and their relationship to modernity.
  • Topic: Economics, Religion, History, Culture, Identities, Anthropology
  • Political Geography: Central Asia, Asia, Azerbaijan