Custom and the Courts: ensuring women's rights to land, Jharkhand, India

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28 Citations (Scopus)


Based on field research in Dumka district, Jharkhand, this article examines the mechanisms through which women operationalize their rights to land. It questions the polarization of legitimation systems into statutory codes and customary practices, as operating independent of each other, and demonstrates the political and temporal situatedness of ‘law’, and the processes of hybridization that allow for the actualization of a legal right, by providing it social recognition and validity. The article explores the choice of different arenas by women for making their claims, with the choice of a particular arena depending not just on access and resource availability, but also on the women's social positionality.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)299-319
Number of pages21
JournalDevelopment and Change
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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