|Making A Living
The Livelihoods of the Rural Poor in Bangladesh
edited by Iqbal Alam Khan and Janet Seeley
ISBN 984 05 1736 8 2005 276pp 215x136mm HB Tk.650.00 US$30.00
To understand the complex picture of poverty and the ways of addressing the issue poses a difficult challenge to development.
This book is about the lives and livelihoods of the poor people of rural Bangladesh. It draws upon the stories they have narrated to a group of researchers over a period of three years. The project aims to understand their livelihood constraints, opportunities and identify key components to help implement development policies and strategies for targeting and reaching out to the poorest. The book also helps to understand the causes of poverty.
Drawing on a conceptual framework based on the livelihoods approach and taking a structured and holistic view of the problem, the contributors attempt to look beyond material poverty. They seek to understand how it ‘feels’ to be poor.
The particular constraint faced by women and adolescent girls are the focus of two chapters in the book.
In their recommendations, the contributors take into account that ‘livelihood’ is not only constructed of material assets but also from cultural values and identities.
The book calls for more attention to be paid to the many ways in which the poorest make a living, so that various programmes for poverty alleviations are responsive to what people do or want to do.
Iqbal Alam Khan has a PhD in economics and international development from the University of Bath, UK. He has 20 years of professional experience in the designing, management and assessment of development research projects. Currently he is Deputy Director, PROSHIKA. He is a Visiting Research Fellow in the Department of Economics and International Development of the University of Bath. His key research interests are in migration, livelihoods, social capital, public bads and well-being.
Janet Seeley is Lecturer at the School of Development Studies, University of East Anglia in UK. She has a PhD in social anthropology from the University of Cambridge. She was a Social Development Adviser in the DFID Rural Development Group, New Delhi, India. Her current research interests are in migration, livelihoods approaches, gender, poverty and health.