“Social Dispossession” in Microcredit
Microcredit advisor Kasia Paprocki published this new research article at Geoforum to advance the notion of “social dispossession”, specifically by focusing on her own prior field research in rural Bangladesh. Social dispossession is the author’s original and new framework to interrogate the systemic abuses of microcredit borrowers. As more fully defined from the article’s abstract:
[quote]Social dispossession is an optic that extends current theorizing on agrarian dispossession into the realm of social reproduction, by examining the testimonies of microcredit borrowers in rural Bangladesh. In recent years, research on microcredit has highlighted new forms of subject-making employed by microcredit and other NGO entrepreneurship development programs. These developments have received insufficient attention in scholarship on agrarian change, both globally and in specific places. I correct this by arguing that microcredit drives social dispossession through three specific mechanisms: the confiscation of assets necessary to social reproduction (as well as to production); the construction of debt relations within a community which reshape what reproduction can look like; and the re-configuration of women’s social status and subjectivities in relation to their communities.[/quote]
It is also helpful to know how specifically social dispossession is generated by microcredit lending to those recipients studied in rural communities of Bangladesh. For this, Kasia has defined these three mechanisms for identifying social dispossession:
(i) the confiscation of assets necessary to social reproduction (as well as to production); (ii) the construction of debt relations within a community which reshape what reproduction can look like; and (iii) the re-configuration of women’s social status and subjectivities in relation to their communities.
Kasia in part, drew on her background as Research and Program Manager for the Goldin Institute from 2007 – 2010, in which she was instrumental in designing and leading the Community Based Oral Testimony (CBOT) project in Bangladesh. Kasia is currently a doctoral candidate and professor in the Department of Development Sociology at Cornell University.
In our efforts to compile the most relevant and recent research in the sector of microcredit lending, this full journal entry will be added to our online bibliography.