Das, Raju J

 Das_Raju J

Das, Raju J


PhD Geography , The Ohio State University
MA Urban Studies , University of Akron
MA Geography , University of Delhi
BA (Honours) Geography , Utkal University

Marxist political economy; Theory of class and state; (Uneven) capitalist development; Urbanization-ruralization of capital; Industrialization under neoliberal capitalism; Poverty agrarian change; Conditions of the working class; Developmental policies of the state; Identity, fascistic, & class politics; Social capital theory & critique; Space-society relations & the built environment; Dual (labour & ecological) Metabolic rift; Class character of the academic; Political economy and politics of India.

I teach courses on Marxist political economy, global economy, international development, state-society/economy relations, and social struggles.

I am on the editorial board of Science & Society (Guilford, New York) and a member of its Manuscript Review Collective. I am also a member of the editorial board of Class, Race and Corporate Power and the editorial advisory board of Dialectical Anthropology.

I am a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Critical Social Science Book Series, Brill, Leiden/Boston.


Current Project

Neoliberal industrialization, the rural periphery, and uneven development in India (PI, 2016-2022, Collaborators: Professors Deepak Mishra, Mohanakumar S., and R. B. Singh from India); Funded by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Grant

Geographically uneven development (GUD) is an enduring problem worldwide. Its urgency is more apparent in the context of the recent phase of industrialization occurring in the South since the onset of the neoliberal form of capitalism. This industrialization, which takes different forms, including transplantation of large-scale industry into rural areas, creating newly industrialized cities, is occurring in many parts of India, in which state’s earlier role in promoting equality between areas (and groups/classes) is relatively diminished since 1991. This new context raises a specific question: how does this pattern of industrialization cause uneven development between newly created urban areas and rural areas, and within the rural periphery? This multi-year project involves much theoretical work, which will guide the empirical component of the project. It will produce a thoroughgoing, rigorous critique of some of the existing views on uneven development and will seek to produce an alternative framework to understand it. The much-neglected perspective of uneven and combined development will shape the thinking about GUD. The project will theorize uneven development in terms of a) the interplay between the ruralisation of capital and what is known as the urbanization of capital, and the attendant issue of the uneven transition to real subsumption of labour, influenced by class struggle, and b) the relation of this interplay to the political power of different social classes as well as neoliberal state policies at sub-national scales. Among other things, the project will theorize, and shed empirical light on, some of the larger issues surrounding uneven development both as an explanan and as an explanandum: the theoretical and empirical link between capitalist industrialization and the place-specific successes/failures of capital and the state to acquire land and use it; geographical character of class relations, including the dialectics of ruralization and urbanization of capital, and of various forms of subsumption of labour under capital; and long-term objective and subjective obstacles to class-politics, including the processes shaping class-based mobilization across the rural-urban divide against capitalism and its state. In short: uneven development will be deployed as a window through which to look at the dynamics of capitalist class relation, in terms of its economic and political dimension, and of anti-capitalist politics.

Selected Publications

Book Chapters

Fasenfest, D. and Das, R. J. 2020. ‘Constructing the Conceptual Tools for the Global South’ in Håkon Leiulfsrud and Peter Sohlberg eds. Constructing the Research Object. Leiden: Brill.

Das, R. J. 2019. ‘Internal Colonialism’, in Audrey Kobayashi, edited. International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (2nd edition), Elsevier Press, Amsterdam.

Das, R. 2019. ‘Geography and Class.’ In Oxford Bibliographies in Geography. Ed. Barney Warf. New York: Oxford University Press.

Bordoloi, S. and Das, R. J. 2017. ‘Modernization Theory’, The International Encyclopedia of Geography, Wiley-Blackwell and the Association of American Geographers.


Das, R. J. Marx’s Capital, Capitalism and the State, Taylor and Francis, London (forthcoming).

Das, R. J. 2020. Critical Reflections on Economy and Politics in India: A Class Theory Perspective. Brill: Leiden. https://brill.com/view/title/55521.

Das, R. J. 2020. The Political Economy of New India: Critical Essays. Delhi: Aakar.

Das, R. J. 2017. Marxist Class Theory for a Skeptical World, Brill: Leiden. https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/1157-marxist-class-theory-for-a-skeptical-world. (The paperback edition is published by Haymarket, Chicago in 2018]

Das, R. J. 2014. A Contribution to the Critique of Contemporary Capitalism: Theoretical and International Perspectives, New York: Nova Science Publishers. ISBN: 978-1-63117-559-6 https://novapublishers.com/shop/a-contribution-to-the-critique-of-contemporary-capitalism-theoretical-and-international-perspectives/.  

Journal Articles

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘On The Urgent Need to Re-engage Classical Marxism’, Critical Sociology, 46:7.          

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘Identity Politics: A Marxist View,’ Class, Race and Corporate Power: Vol. 8 : Iss. 1 , Article 5. pp.1-33. Available at: https://digitalcommons.fiu.edu/classracecorporatepower/vol8/iss1/5

Das, R. 2020. The marginalization of Marxism in Academia. Monthly Review Online. https://mronline.org/2020/02/06/the-marginalization-of-marxism-in-academia/.

Das, R. J. 2019. ‘Indian Election 2019: A Marxist Interpretation’, International Socialism: A Quarterly review of socialist theory, No. 164. http://isj.org.uk/indias-2019-general-election/.

Das, R. J. 2019. Politics of Marx as Non-sectarian Revolutionary Class Politics: An Interpretation in the Context of the 20th and 21st Centuries, Class, Race and Corporate Power, Vol. 7:1. https://digitalcommons.fiu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1135&context=classracecorporatepower/.

Das, R. 2019. Revolutionary theory, academia and Marxist political parties, Links: International Journal of Socialist Renewal (published in Australia). http://links.org.au/revolutionary-theory-academia-marxist-political-parties/.

Das, R. J. and Chen, A. 2019. ‘Towards a Theoretical Framework for Understanding Capitalist Violence Against Child Labour’, World Review of Political Economy, vol. 10:2, 191-219.

Das, R. J. 2018. A Marxist perspective on sustainability: Brief reflections on ecological sustainability and social inequality; http://links.org.au/marxism-ecological-sustainability-social-inequality/.

Das, R. 2018. ‘Anti-materialism, capitalism, and violence against the human body: some preliminary comments’, Monthly Review online, https://mronline.org/2018/04/20/anti-materialism-capitalism-and-violence-against-the-human-body-some-preliminary-comments/.

Das, R. J. 2018. ‘Fascistic politics in India, the left, and Lenin’s theory of temporary compromise’; Sanhati http://sanhati.com/excerpted/18677/.

Das, R. J. 2018. “The age of unreason or misology: The knowledge-practice relation and its political significance.” Link: International Journal of Socialist Renewal. http://links.org.au/age-unreason-misology-knowledge-practice-relation-political-significance/.

Das, R. J. 2017. ‘David Harvey’s Theory of Uneven Geographical Development: A Marxist Critique’, Capital and Class. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0309816816678584.

Das, R. J. 2017. ‘Social Movements and State Repression in India’, Journal of Asian and African Studies. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0021909616653258.

Das, R. J. 2017. 'David Harvey’s Theory of Accumulation by Dispossession: A Marxist Critique', World Review of Political Economy, 8:4.

Das, R. J. 2016. ‘The On-Going Attack on Democracy and Secularism (in India): What is to be Done?’, Bullet; available at: http://www.socialistproject.ca/bullet/1252.php.

Das, R. J. 2015. ‘Critical Observations on Neoliberalism and India’s New Economic Policy’, Journal of Contemporary Asia, 45: 4, 715-726.

Das, Raju J. 2014. 'Low-Wage Capitalism, Social Difference, and Nature-Dependent Production: A Study of the Conditions of Workers in Shrimp Aquaculture', Human Geography: A New Radical Journal, Vol 7(1):17-34.

Other Key Contributions

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘Capitalist Political Economy, Fascistic Tendencies, and Left Politics in India’.Marxist Sociology blog: Theory, Research, Politics; https://marxistsociology.org/2020/07/capitalist-political-economy-fascistic-tendencies-and-left-politics-in-india/ 

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘The social power of money and the neoliberal capitalist model of development’. Links: International Journal of Socialist Renewal (published in Australia). http://links.org.au/social-power-money-neoliberal-capitalist-model-development

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘The pandemic and the need for a new society’. The Bullet. https://socialistproject.ca/2020/06/pandemic-and-the-need-for-new-society/

Das, R. J. 2020. ‘The Fascistic Turn in the World’s Largest Democracy’, Left Voice. https://www.leftvoice.org/the-fascistic-turn-in-the-worlds-largest-democracy-2

Das, R. J. and Fasenfest, D. 2018. ‘Marx and the Global South’, Global Dialogue: Magazine of International Sociological Association; http://globaldialogue.isa-sociology.org/marx-and-the-global-south/

Das, R. 2018. What is class struggle today? http://stateofnatureblog.com/one-question-class-struggle-today/ (invited contribution).


Upcoming Courses

Winter 2021 EU/GEOG3710 South Asia: Society, Space & Environment

Fall/Winter 2020 EU/GEOG1000 An Introduction to World Geography

Fall 2020 GS/GEOG5375 Space, Place and Capitalism