Celebrations as Social Investments: Festival Expenditures, Unit Price Variation and Social Status in Rural India

  title={Celebrations as Social Investments: Festival Expenditures, Unit Price Variation and Social Status in Rural India},
  author={Vijayendra Rao},
  journal={The Journal of Development Studies},
  pages={71 - 97}
  • V. Rao
  • Published 1 October 2001
  • Economics
  • The Journal of Development Studies
Festival expenditures amount to over 15 per cent of a household's annual expenditures in rural India. Yet they have never been studied by economists. This article uses both qualitative and quantitative data from a case study of three South Indian villages to show that festivals are important public goods in the village, but neither a pure entertainment motive nor an altruistic desire to contribute to a public event seems to explain their size. Households which spend money on festivals… 
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