Human Bondage

Tracing its Roots in India

by Lakshmidhar Mishra

Human Bondage: Tracing its Roots in India is an in-depth study of bonded labour with special focus on how the system exists in India. The book provides us with a detailed analysis of the historical, social and cultural context in which bondage has developed.

The author discusses the socio-economic characteristics that accompany bondage: caste, illiteracy, landlessness and land tenure issues, alienation of land, lack of skills, poor employment and wage conditions, indebtedness, migration, and globalization.

Extreme forms of bondage, including child labour, trafficking in women and children, and social forms like devadasis and yoginis have also been covered.

The book explores important factors like the legal framework, policy interventions, solutions and the role of the various stakeholders-media, government, trade unions and NGOs-in tackling this issue.

The book is essentially about human freedom and dignity-the quintessence of human existence-and the forces that rob them, the dispossessed victims, consequences of dispossession, and ways and means of restoration.


  • SAGE Publications; July 2011
  • ISBN: 9788132107705
  • Edition: 1
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Human Bondage
  • Author: Lakshmidhar Mishra
  • Imprint: Sage Publications Pvt. Ltd

In The Press

A well-documented volume, brought up to date, and an important addition to the hitherto published major critical studies on bonded labour...Mishra’s analysis is illuminated by flashes of direct encounters with bonded labourers, migrants, members of depressed castes and women workers, enabling readers to listen to their voices- complaining, angry and rebellious.