PhD First Semester

Foundation Courses

Paper I: Socio-Economic and Political History of Nepal

Course Objectives

This paper offers a comprehensive exploration of the peoples and cultures of the Nepal through ethnographic materials that draw on the lifeways of populations living in Nepal. Some of the cultural issues to be examined through these sources include forms of social life, ethnic diversity, political and economic history. The intention of this course is to raise key development issues in a comparative framework using both historical trajectories as well as current debates on the patterns of long term development.

Course Outlines                                                                                                                    LH

Unit I: Political History of Nepal                                                                                         15

  1. Environment, State and Society in the Central Himalaya to 1743
  2. Unification and Sanskritization, 1743-1885
  3. Nepal Under the Shamasher Rana, 1885-1951
  4. The Monarchy in Ascendance: Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations 1951-1991
  5. The quest for “Development”: Economy and Environment, 1951-1991
  6. Lifestyles, Vales, Identities: Changes in Nepalese Society
  7. Democracy and Disillusionment: Nepal since 1991

Unit II: Socio-Economic History of Nepal                                                                          15

  1. Economic Aspects and Consequences of Political Unification
  2. The Economic Background
  3. The Extension of State Control Over the Land
  4. Revenue and Taxation
  5. Revenue Administration: Impact on Agrarian Conditions
  6. The Peasants and the Land
  7. Forces Labour and Slavery
  8. General Economic Policies and Programmes
  9. Economic Development after the Nepal-British War

Unit III: Caste Formation in Nepal                                                                                    9

  1. The Caste Hierarchy and the State in Nepal
  2. The Formation of the Concept of Nation-State in Nepal
  3. Fatalism and Development

Unit IV: Ethnic Formation in Nepal                                                                                   9

  1. State and Society in Nepal
  2. Social Composition of Population in Nepal
  3. Nation Building and Multi-Ethnicity



Bista, D. B. (2008). Fatalism and development: Nepal’s struggle for modernization. Kolkata: Orient Longman Pvt. Ltd.

Blaikie, P, J. Camreon & D. Seddon (2007). Nepal in crisis: Growth and stagnation at the periphery.  India: Adroit Publishers.

Burghat, R. (1996). The formation of the concept of nation-state in Nepal. In C.J. Fuller & J. Spencer (Eds.) The conditions of listening (pp. 226-260). New York: Oxford University Press.

Dahal, Dilli Ram (2014). Social composition of population: caste/ethnicity and religion in Nepal [Monograph]. Population Monograph of Nepal, Vol II, 1-50

Gellner, D. N., J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton (Eds.) (1997). Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom: The politics of culture in contemporary Nepal. The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Gurung, Harka (1997). State and society in Nepal. In D. N. Gellner, J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton eds. Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom (pp. 495-532). The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Gurung, Harka (2003). Social demography of Nepal: Census 2001. Nepal: Himal Books.

Höfer, A. (1979). The caste hierarchy and the state in Nepal: A study of Muluki Ain of 1854. Innsbruck: Universitätsverlang Wagner.

Hutchinson, John & Anthony D. Smith (1996). Introduction. In John Hutchinson and Anthony D. Smith (Eds.), Ethnicity. New York: Oxford Press

  1. Pfaff-Czarnecka (1997): Vestiges and visions: Cultural change in the process of nation building in Nepal”. In D. N. Gellner, J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton (Eds.), Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom (pp.419-470). The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Regmi, Mahesh C. (2011). Nepal, an historical miscellany. India: Adroit Publishers

………………….. (1999). A study in Nepali economic history 1768-1846. Delhi: Adroit Publishers.

………………….. (1978). Land tenure and taxation in Nepal. Kathmandu: Ratna Pustak Bhandar

Seddon, David, P. Blaikie & J. Cameron (Eds.) (2002). Peasants and workers in Nepal. Delhi: Adroit Publishers.

Seddon, David (1987). Nepal: A state of poverty. New Delhi: Vikash Publications.

Sharma, Prayag Raj (1997). Nation building, multi-ethnicity and the Hindu state. In D. N. Gellner, J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton (Eds.), Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom (pp. 471-495). The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Whelpton, J. (2005). A history of Nepal. UK: Cambridge University Press.

Whelpton, J. (1997). ‘Political identity in Nepal: State, nation, and community’. In D. N. Gellner, J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton (Eds.), Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom (pp. 39-78). The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Paper II: Economics of Development

Course Objectives

This paper focuses on not only theoretical knowledge, policy awareness, and necessary analytical techniques to tackle many of the key issues relating to development but also a practical awareness of many recent and past successful development experiences. The major integrates macroeconomic issues with underlying microeconomic processes, emphasizing the importance of the global economic environment including domestic institutions, regulatory frameworks and socioeconomic groups. It pays particular attention to the impact of international and domestic economic policies on growth, poverty and income distribution in developing countries, and seeks to bring out the fundamental linkages between economic growth and human development.

Course Outlines                                                                                                                    LH

Unit I: Development and Growth                                                                                       12

  1. Patterns of Development
  2. Measuring Economic Growth and Development
  3. Economic Growth: Concepts and Patterns
  4. Theories of Economic Growth
  5. States and Markets

Unit II: Distribution and Human Resources                                                                     12

  1. Inequality and Poverty
  2. Population
  3. Education
  4. Health

Unit III: Macroeconomics Policies for Development                                                         12

  1. Investment and Savings
  2. Policies for Economic Development
  3. Financial Development and Inflation
  4. Foreign Debt and Financial Crises
  5. Foreign Aid
  6. Managing Short-Run Crises in an Open Economy

Unit IV: Agricultural Trade and Sustainability                                                    12

  1. Agriculture and Development
  2. Analysis of Agricultural Technology and Institution
  3. Economics of Trade and Market Demand
  4. Food and Agricultural Policy
  5. Sustainable Development



Chang, Ha-Joon (2000). Kicking Away the Ladder: Development Strategy in Historical Perspective. London: Anthem Press.

Colman, David & Trevor, Young (1997). Principles of agricultural economics: Markets and prices in less developed countries. UK: Cambridge University Press.

Cypher, James, M. & James L. Dietz (1997). The process of economic development. London and New York: Routledge

Hansson, Göte (ed.) (2003). Trade, growth and development: The role of politics and development. London and New York: Routledge

Perkins, Dwight.H., Steven Radelet, David L. Lindauer & Steven A. Block (2013). Economics of development (Seventh edition). USA: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc.

Paper III: Socio-Cultural Perspectives for Development

Course Objectives

This paper introduces the study of culture and society in comparative perspective. Examples from societies around the world illustrate the basic principles of formation, structure, and distribution of human institutions. Of special concern is the contribution and knowledge that cultural diversity makes toward understanding the problems of the modern world.

Course Outlines                                                                                                                    LH

Unit I: Fundamental Theory of State and Culture                                                           12

  1. Science of Society of August Comte
  2. Theory of Science of Karl Marx
  3. Social Structure of Emile Durkheim
  4. Ironic Social Theory of Max Weber

Unit II: Rethinking the Fundamental Theory                                                                   15

  1. Grand Theory
  2. The Scientific Theory
  3. Religion Studies
  4. Critical Social Theory
  5. Cultural Studies

Unit III: Anthropology of Modernity and Development                                                  9

  1. Modernity
  2. Post-modernity
  3. Post-structuralism

Unit IV: Theory of Identity Politics                                                                                    12

  1. Theory of Caste/Ethnicity
  2. Feminist Theory
  3. Critical Race Theory
  4. Lesbian, Gay, and Queer Theory


Action, H. B. (1951). Comte’s positivism and the science of society. Philosophy, 26 (99), 291-310.

Arce, Alberto & Norman Long (Eds.) (2000). Reconfiguring modernity and development from an anthropological perspective. In Alberto Arce & Norman Long (Eds.), Anthropology, development and modernities: Exploring discourses, counter-tendencies and violence (pp. 1-30). London: Routledge

Arturo, E (1995). Introduction. Encountering development: The making and unmaking of the Third World (pp.3-20). Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Barth, F. (1969). Introduction. In F. Barth (Ed.), Ethnic groups and boundaries: The social organization of cultural difference (pp. 9-38). USA: Waveland Press, Inc.

Chafetz, Janet Saltzman (1997). Feminist Theory and Sociology: Underutilized Contributions for Mainstream Theory. Annual Review of Sociology, 23, 97-120.

Dumont, L (1960). Homo hierarchies: The caste system and its implication. New Delhi: Oxford Press

Eickleman, Dale F (1979). The political economy of meaning. Ethnologist, 6(2), 386-393.

Gellner, D. N. (1997). Introduction: ethnicity and nationalism in the World’s only Hindu state’. In D. N. Gellner, J. Pfaff-Czarnecka & J. Whelpton (eds.), Nationalism and ethnicity in a Hindu Kingdom (pp. 3-32). The Netherlands: Horwood Academic Publishers.

Giddens, Anthony (1970). Marx, Weber, and the development of capitalism. Sociology, 4(3), 289-310.

Gottlieb, Roger S. (1981). The Contemporary Critical Theory of Jurgen Habermas. Ethics, 91 (2), 280-29.

Johnson, Matthew (Ed.) (2012). The legacy of Marxism: Contemporary challenges, conflicts and developments. London: Continuum International Publishing Group.

Karp, Ivan (1986). Agency and social theory: A review of Anthony Giddens. American Ethnologist, 13(1), 131-137.

Marcus, Sharon (2005). Queer Theory for Everyone: A Review Essay. Signs, 31(1), 191-218.

Parsons, Talcott (1948). The Position of Sociological Theory. American Sociological Review, 13(2), 156-171.

Perelman, Michael (1978). Karl Marx’s theory of science. Journal of Economic Issues, 12(4), 859-870.

Rockmore, Tom (2002). Marx after Marxism: The philosophy of Karl Marx. UK: Blackwell Publishers.

Seidman, Steve (1994). Contested knowledge: Social theory today (Third edition). Blackwell Publishing.

Smith, A.D. (1986). The Ethnic Origins of Nations. Oxford: Blackwell.

Swedberg, Richard (2003). The Changing Picture of Max Weber’s Sociology. Annual Review of Sociology, 29, 283-306.

Wiarda, Howard J. (Ed.) (2010). Grand theories and ideologies in the social sciences. New York: Palgrave Macmillon.

Core Course

Paper IV: Theories of Development

Course Objectives

This paper introduces both critical reading of classical and alternative theories of development. It also brings to the fore the challenges these theories have faced from different quarters such as the post-development and anti-globalization approaches. The paper scrutinizes debates on substantive topics in the theoretical interpretations of development and underdevelopment including the measurement of development to shaping the quantitative knowledge on poverty and wellbeing.

Course Outlines                                                                                                                    LH

Unit I: Conception and Dimensions of Development                                                       9

  1. Development: Defining the Terrain
  2. Approach to Development
  3. Post-Development
  4. Rural Development

Unit II: International Context of National Development                                                             18

  1. Early Modernization Theory
  2. Neo-evolutionism and Modernization Theory
  3. Underdevelopment Theory
  4. World System Theory
  5. Critiques of World System Perspectives

Unit III: Political Economy                                                                                                  12

  1. Introduction to Political Economy
  2. Development and Globalization
  3. Neo-Liberalism
  4. Neo-Institutionalism

Unit IV: Governance and Development                                                                             9

  1. Global Governance
  2. Local Governance and Development
  3. Local Governance in Developing Countries




Berger, Guy (1992). Social Structure and rural development in the Third World. UK: Cambridge University Press

Cadman, Tim (2012). Evaluating the quality and legitimacy of global governance: A Theoretical and Analytical. The International Journal of Social Quality, 2(1), 4-23.

Craig, David & Doug Porter (2006). Development beyond neoliberalism? Governance, poverty reduction and political economy. London: Routledge Publishing and Taylor and Francis Group

Edelman, Marc & Australia: Blackwell Publishing

Harrison, David (1988). The sociology of modernization and development. London: Routledge Publishing Taylor and Francis Group

Herrera, Eduardo Wills (2016). Governance and development: The importance of legitimacy
and institutional change. In Georgina M. Gómez & Peter Knorringa (Eds.), Local governance, economic development and institutions (pp. 19-38). UK: Palgrave Macmillan.

Parfitt, Trevor (2002). The end of development? Modernity, post-modernity and development. London: Pluto Press

Putzel, James (2005). Globalization, liberalization, and prospects for the state.
 International Political Science Review, 26 (1), 5-16.

Rittberge, Volker (Ed.) (2001). Global governance and the united nations system. Japan: United Nations Universities

Shah, Anwar & Sana Shah (2006). The new vision of local governance and the evolving roles of local governments. In Anwar Shah (Ed.), Local governance in developing countries (pp. 1-43). Washington: The World Bank.

Smith, Tony (1985). Requiem or new agenda for Third World studies? World politics, 37(4), 532-561.

Willis, Kate (2005). Theories and practices of development. London: Routledge Publishing Taylor & Francis Group