Peace and conflict in Ladakh. The construction of a fragile web of order

Fernanda Pirie

Leiden/Boston: Brill

Year of publication



Long caught between powerful neighbours, Ladakh is now a border region in the vast Indian nation state. In this detailed, anthropological study Fernanda Pirie traces the ways order has been created by, but also despite and in defiance of, the powerful external forces of religion, war, politics and wealth. Gradually a clear analysis unfolds of the subtle dynamics that have long characterised relations between local communities and centres of power and which can successfully be applied to the wider region. This exemplary study of conflict resolution brings to light the means by which small communities, both rural and urban, negotiate peace amidst the heterogeneous forces of modernity, while at the same time critically re-examining theories that over-emphasize the explanatory power of Buddhism.The rich ethnographic account of local practices fills a conspicuous gap in secondary literature on Tibetan law.

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