Dissertation Abstracts

Ethnic Identity and Everyday Life: Madheshis and Non-Madheshis in Nepal’s Eastern Tarai

Author: Pandey, Krishna P, krishnapandey40@yahoo.com
Department: Department of Sociology
University: South Asian University, India
Supervisor: Dr. Chudamani Basnet
Year of completion: In progress
Language of dissertation: English

Keywords: Ethnicity , Identity , Everyday life , inteeraction
Areas of Research: Racism, Nationalism and Ethnic Relations


Inter-ethnic relation is highly contested issue in the contemporary social and political discourses in Nepal. Sociological researches ever done in the country either emphasize the marginalization of ethnic groups from development and political mainstream or take ethnic division as their research core only from macro perspective. Since the beginning of identity politics in the Tarai inter-ethnic contention has been realized primarily in national discourse but the interaction between Madheshis (Non-hill origin people) and Pahadi (Hill origin people) in everyday lives of the local people is still out of light. So this research looks answer for how they express Pahadi and Madheshi identities in their everyday interaction in eastern Tarai of Nepal after Madhesh movement in 2007.

This research strives to bridge the literature gap on inter-ethnic interaction in Tarai that has been realized for long before. For this, I have followed grounded theory methodology as the better option to enter into the everyday lives of the local people. Conceptually, the research looks at how people identify ethnic categories, and build and maintain network between the members of two or more culturally distinct groups in everyday life in a heterogeneous setting. To complement the grounded theory methodology I have identified in-depth interview, observation, and personal communication as methods of information collection. By and large, the research provides a new and different taste for those who have interest in understanding inter-ethnic dynamics in local level on the backdrop Madhesh movement in Nepal’s eastern Tarai from people's perspectives.