Cafe Culture in Pune: Being Young and Middle Class in Urban India

Hardcover | October 22, 2014

byTeresa Platz Robinson

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The emergence of a visible commodified leisure culture in the form of cafes, targeted at and appropriated by young adults from the middle classes, is a striking phenomenon in the transformation of urban life in India since the economic liberalization in 1991. Cafe Culture is an ethnographicsnapshot, taken in 2008, tracing the effects of globalization from the perspective of young middle class urbanites in post-liberalization Pune, India. Documenting with meticulous detail their life world - from clothing to hanging out, friendship, dating, education, and marriage - the work capturesnew forms of socializing, consumption, self-improvement and relationship-management. These practices set the young generation apart - the first to grow up with mass-consumerism - as a group in historical time, in relation to other life worlds in India, to "Western" versions and as a rounded lifeworld in itself. Rich in ethnographic detail, this work follows the young cafe culture crowd in its practices domesticating "the global" while transcending "the local". They are seen negotiating to follow their hearts, while preserving strong family bonds and inter-generational dependencies - thus modifying themeaning of being middle class Indians in our contemporary globalized world.

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The emergence of a visible commodified leisure culture in the form of cafes, targeted at and appropriated by young adults from the middle classes, is a striking phenomenon in the transformation of urban life in India since the economic liberalization in 1991. Cafe Culture is an ethnographicsnapshot, taken in 2008, tracing the effects o...

Teresa Platz Robinson is an independent scholar. She has an MA in Socio-Cultural Anthropology, Philosophy and History of South Asia (Berlin); MA in Research Methods in Anthropology (Durham, UK); and PhD in Social Anthropology (Durham, UK).
Format:HardcoverDimensions:320 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.01 inPublished:October 22, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198099436

ISBN - 13:9780198099437

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsIntroduction1. Cafe Culture2. Clothing3. Morality of Indian Conviviality I: The Old Way4. Morality of Indian Conviviality II: Friendship amongst the Cafe Culture5. Education: Indian Success Stories6. Dating, Sex, and MarriageConclusionBibliographyIndexAbout the Author