From peasants to lords: the intellectual evolution of Grant Evans

Hutton, C.; Blättler, Dominic (2016). From peasants to lords: the intellectual evolution of Grant Evans Journal of Lao Studies, 3(1), pp. 24-36. Center for Lao Studies

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This paper reviews Grant Evans’ writings on peasants, focusing on the theoretical frameworks within which he operated. Evans’ career is marked by a turn away from the ideological beliefs of his youth and early academic career, and in tandem with this, his work shifted from the socio-economic anthropology of rural Laos to a broader concern with Lao society, religion, culture and history. Evans became increasingly concerned that Lao history should be written outside the framework of post-1975 communist nationalism, and the logical culmination of this was his project to document the modern history of the Lao monarchy. His critique of central planning and social engineering was extended to the assumptions of (many) aid interventions, especially those that brought a prepackaged ideological agenda to the complex social, economic and moral economy of rural Laos. While by the end of the 1990s peasants were no longer the main focus of his work, he continued to insist on the continuing relevance of the category and the importance of a proper, anthropologically informed understanding of the rural economy and of Lao peasant society.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences HAFL > Resource-efficient agricultural production systems
School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences HAFL > HAFL Hugo P. Cecchini Institute

Name:

Hutton, C. and
Blättler, Dominic

Subjects:

S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)

ISSN:

2159-2152

Publisher:

Center for Lao Studies

Language:

English

Submitter:

Admin import user

Date Deposited:

03 Oct 2019 09:55

Last Modified:

23 Sep 2020 09:09

URI:

https://arbor.bfh.ch/id/eprint/5878

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