Marketable Surplus^ Market Dependence and Economic Development
THE role of marketable surplus in economic development has tended to be taken for granted rather than examined by the majority of studies on the problem. This has resulted in singling out marketable surplus as the most critical or overriding constraint on economic development in both theoretical formulations and empirical studies. Deceleration in Indian economic growth in the seventies — both in industry and agriculture — and the overwhelming magnitude of poverty and unemployment, in spite of comfortable food stocks, necessitate a fresh look at such theories.
There are two approaches to the study of the relationship between marketable surplus and economic development. The first consists of showing how marketable surplus (and hence agricultural development) is a crucial constraint on industrialization. The second approach deals with the process of generation of marketable surplus, using a Marxist analytical framework. It is primarily concerned with the process of creation of home market; the generation of marketable surplus from agriculture can be viewed as a part of this process. The creation of a home market itself is an inseparable part of the process of commercialization and capitalist development.