(NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019)
Outlaw motorcycle clubs have grown, spread and matured. Popular culture glamorizes them; law enforcement agencies fight them and the media vilify them. Meanwhile, the outlaw bikers exploit the current cultural and economic climate to attract new members. How Outlaws Win Friends and Influence People argues that the growth of these anti-establishment groups under neoliberalism is not coincidental, but inevitable. The book asks a critical question for our times: why do people today, in increasing numbers, support, admire and aspire to be outlaws? What needs and desires do the clubs satisfy? How do they win support and influence? Answering this is crucial if we are to successfully fight the social harms caused by these groups, as well as the harms that underlie their proliferation. Unless we understand the cultural dynamic at play here, our fight against these organizations will always take the form of a battle against the mythological Hydra: when one head is cut off, two more grow.
“Tereza Kuldova is a rebel with a cause - her new book is a razor-sharp critique of stereotypical conceptions of the ‘outlaw biker’ and provides refreshing insights into their subjective life-worlds” - Daniel Briggs, author of the award-winning Dead-End Lives.
“For many, the current political tumult indicates a renewed struggle for popular sovereignty against the post-political technocrats who administer neoliberalism's unforgiving market logic. For the excellent anthropologist Tereza Kuldova, the condottieri of this struggle ride Harley Davidsons at full throttle to outrun the forces of incorporation. A must-read for anyone who wants to understand today’s volatile interface of culture and politics” - Steve Hall, Professor Emeritus of Criminology, Teesside Centre for Realist Criminology, UK.
“How Outlaws Win Friends and Influence People provides an important contribution to our general knowledge of motorcycle clubs and the sociology of deviance more generally. It is original, creative, and well researched” - Martín Sánchez-Jankowski, Professor of Sociology and Director of the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, University of California, Berkeley, US.
(London: Bloomsbury, 2016)
This unique ethnographic investigation examines the role that fashion plays in the production of the contemporary Indian luxury aesthetic. Tracking luxury Indian fashion from its production in village craft workshops via upmarket design studios to fashion soirées, Kuldova investigates the Indian luxury fashion market's dependence on the production of thousands of artisans all over India, revealing a complex system of hierarchies and exploitation. In recent years, contemporary Indian design has dismissed the influence of the West and has focused on the opulent heritage luxury of the maharajas, Gulf monarchies and the Mughal Empire. Luxury Indian Fashion argues that the desire for a luxury aesthetic has become a significant force in the attempt to define contemporary Indian society. From the cultivation of erotic capital in businesswomen's dress to a discussion of masculinity and muscular neo-royals to staged designer funerals, Luxury Indian Fashion analyzes the production, consumption and aesthetics of luxury and power in India. Luxury Indian Fashion is essential reading for students of fashion history and theory, anthropology and visual culture.
“A deep and thorough examination of the luxury fashion industry in India, written by a specialist in this field who has embedded herself within the culture by spending extensive time living in, and genuinely experiencing, the environments she explores. Kuldova visits terrains not previously tackled by anthropologists to present us with an insightful, honest and eye-opening study, which is factual, while critically analytical, at times gritty and unabashed. It is of my opinion that this book will be invaluable to students of many disciplines as well an enjoyable read for a wider audience.” – Kathryn A. Hardy Bernal, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand
“Tereza Kuldova offers a path-breaking study, examining intersections of fashion, nationalism, networks of production and consumerism, and social hierarchies in India today. Engagingly well-written, frank, witty, and critically engaged, Luxury Indian Fashion takes readers on a journey from village craft centers to urban haute couture fashion shows, making all the stops along the way.” – Melia Belli Bose, University of Texas at Arlington, USA
Scheming Legality, Resisting Criminalization
eds. Tereza Kuldova & Martín Sánchez-Jankowski
(NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018)
This edited collection offers in-depth essays on outlaw motorcycle clubs and street gangs. Written by sociologists, anthropologists and criminologists, it asks the question of how the self-proclaimed ‘outlaws’ integrate into society. While these groups may cultivate a deviant image, these original studies show that we should not let ourselves be deceived by appearances. These ‘outlaws’ are, paradoxically, well integrated into mainstream society. The essays read the relationship of these groups to the media, law enforcement and society through the lens of their strategies of ‘scheming legality’ and ‘resisting criminalization’. These reveal most strikingly how the knowledge of social codes, norms and mechanisms is put to use by these groups. This groundbreaking volume provides answers to previously understudied questions through well-researched case studies drawn from across Europe and United States. With wide-reaching implications for communities around the world, this exciting collection of essays will be of great interest to academics and governmental institutions as well as students and general readers of anthropology, sociology and criminology.
Excess and Expulsion in Neoliberal South Asia
eds. Tereza Kuldova & Mathew A. Varghese
(NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017)
This book brings anthropologists and critical theorists together in order to investigate utopian visions of the future in the neoliberal cities of India and Sri Lanka. Arguing for the priority of materiality in any analysis of contemporary ideology, the authors explore urban construction projects, special economic zones, fashion ramps, films, archaeological excavations, and various queer spaces. In the process, they reveal how diverse co-existing utopian visions are entangled with local politics and global capital, and show how these utopian visions are at once driven by visions of excess and by increasing expulsions. It’s a dystopia already in the making – one marred by land grabs and forced evictions, rising inequality, and the loss of urbanity and civility.
ed. Tereza Kuldova
(Oslo: Akademika Publishing, 2015)
The opulent, delicate, and handcrafted Indian fashion pieces resemble the white lotus, India's national flower. The lotus too, with its beauty, grows out of the mud - mud that remains invisible and hidden. *** This anthology, written by an international group of anthropologists with hands-on experience in India and its multi-faceted fashion industry, explores the underlying dynamics of 'spectacular capitalism.' The contributors present a range of intriguing case studies that open up the potential for critique of the local, as much as the global, system that reproduces hierarchies and inequalities, while opening a window onto contemporary urban India. The book examines such questions as: * What do contemporary Indian spectacular fashion shows have in common with Western 19th-century department store fantasy palaces, the royal durbars, the elaborate museum displays of the colonial era, and the lives of erstwhile Indian royals? * What can the Delhi International Airport reveal about the current obsession of Indians with 'Indianness' - the 'local' and the refashioning of India for the global audience? * How does the 'royal chic' (the current trend in luxury Indian haute couture that recreates the splendor of the aristocratic lifestyles of the bygone era) depend on poverty for its visual and material existence? * Why does the Indian government invest in the Northeast Indian fashion scene and into the production of ethnic glamour and tribal chic? * How do glamour-seeking Kerala Muslim women appropriate the sexy Bollywood fashions while still retaining their codes of modesty? * How does the world of Delhi and its fashion designers look from the perspective of the village craftswomen that work for them, mock them, and laugh at them and their hectic life? * What is the science and artisanship behind the production of traditional Kolhapuri sandals, turned into luxury items for international consumers? * How do Bollywood cinema and the changing male fashion and body ideals reflect the transforming India?