Sunday, July 13, 2003

Dowry Economics

Caste remains a source of status. Women compete for the limited pool of men in castes above them. They bid up the price of this scarce quantity claims a theory ( Siwan Anderson, economist at the University of Tilburg)

1. Why are men suddenly scarce ?
2. Intercaste marriages are becoming more common and why has it not reduced dowry ?
3. What happens in same caste marriages where a woman is not trying to marry up in caste ?

Though it is true women tend to marry up ( In terms of status in society), it is very rare they marry up in caste.

This theory throws up more questions than it answers and I suspect the economist has not really understood what Caste means in an Indian context.


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