Economic and Social Change in Khairpur (1947-1980)

Shuja Ahmed

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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Abstract of Thesis
This study is mainly focussed on the analysis of social and economic changes as an outcome of technological change introduced in twentieth century agriculture in Khairpur. These changes led to the emergence of a middle class in Khairpur. Chapter 1 introduces Sind and summarises the conditions of Khairpur state in the mid-twentieth century and concludes the key points regarding the socio-economic and administrative status of the state. Chapter 2 deals with Green Revolution debate. The next three chapters describe the main sources of agricultural revolution which created social, cultural and political changes in Khairpur. These sources included the improvement of irrigation, the introduction of mechanisation in agriculture and the adoption of new high-yielding varieties technology. Chapter 6 examines the process of commercialisation of agriculture and growth of urban culture as an impact of agricultural change. It analyses consumer culture as a new middle class life was created by technological change. The chapter demonstrates how the cultural way of life underwent a remarkable transformation in Khairpur through the consumption of new products. This argument at one level examines the tools of marketing used by advertisers and it indicates at another level the thrust of consumers for their desired identities in a society where they were marginalised by the way that the economic and social order had developed in colonial times.
Chapter 7 demonstrates that shopping and leisure became increasingly important for the middle class. It was by such means that they expressed their new identities and new social positions. They also came to express themselves politically. Thus, they were able to assert themselves against the attempts of the landlords and bureaucrats to keep them down. But they were not able to do so to the extent that they took power. Nevertheless, there were changes in the economic and social structure which portended future political change. Chapter 8 deals with conclusion of the study.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Robinson, Francis, Supervisor
  • Ansari, Sarah, Advisor
Thesis sponsors
Award date1 Oct 2012
Publication statusUnpublished - 2012


  • Economic and Social change in Pakistan, South Asia
  • Emergence of Middle Class consciousness in Khairpur, Sindh
  • Green Revolution, Impact of technological change in agriculture
  • Irrigation in Khairpur state and Sindh
  • Mechanisation in Khairpur
  • Introduction of High Yielding varieties
  • Consumption, urbanisation
  • Industry and Rural-Urban migration
  • Communication and Commercial services
  • Education, Shopping, Leisure and Self-Improvement
  • Middle Class and Rural-elite
  • Political System, Public Sphere and Middle Class issues
  • Social, Political and Cultural impact of Green Revolution
  • Separation of Sindh from Bombay
  • Sukkur Barrage and Canal Irrigation
  • One Unit Scheme
  • Bureaucracy and Middle Class

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