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The Political Economy of Rural-Urban ConflictPredation, Production, and Peripheries$
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Topher L. McDougal

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198792598

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198792598.001.0001

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Multipolar Trade and Rural–Urban Violence in Maoist India

Multipolar Trade and Rural–Urban Violence in Maoist India

Chapter:
(p.131) 6 Multipolar Trade and Rural–Urban Violence in Maoist India
Source:
The Political Economy of Rural-Urban Conflict
Author(s):

Topher L. McDougal

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198792598.003.0006

Does the shape or strength of the trade networks that link rural and urban areas affect the employment of violence? This chapter attempts to answer this question employing a statistical model based on GIS-derived variables, and using the case of the Maoist insurgency in rural India. It argues that (1) strong rural–urban linkages do in fact lower the intensity of violence employed by the rural Maoist insurgency against civilian people (but not against government targets or property); and (2) highly interconnected areas experience lower levels of violence against people (but not against government targets). The conclusion suggests that network structure affects bargaining power differentials between the Maoists and traders serving the area. Towns redundantly to urban areas simultaneously decrease traders’ monopoly power, while increasing the cost of Maoist capture. These two factors promote a trading relationship between Maoists and redundantly connected towns.

Keywords:   rural–urban linkages, violent conflict, transportation networks, trade, Maoist rebels, India

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