SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Harris, Colette (2019) 'The capacity to aspire: young persons and gender–age relations in southern Tajikistan and North India.' Central Asian Survey, 38 (4). pp. 460-475.

[img] Text - Accepted Version
Download (162B)


Rather than studying young men's career- and/or economic-based aspirations, this article explores the obstacles that hinder youths of both sexes in gerontocratic southern Tajikistan and North India from developing the capacity to make their own life choices. Focusing mainly on the selection of marital partner and largely on women, I explore the narratives of those who have never even dreamed of a good life, of others who have dreamed but been unable to actualize their dreams, of a few who have started to plan the way forward, and of a tiny number who actually managed to achieve their aspirations, teasing out the influences that facilitate this. I suggest that even educated youths with some control over their public lives are constricted by their family relations and that it requires quite specific support to defy one’s family, which can create significant vulnerabilities in settings with no other safety net.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: youths; aspirations; gender; family relations; southern Tajikistan; North India
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Development Studies
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Women
ISSN: 14653354
Copyright Statement: © 2019 Global South Ltd. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Central Asian Survey on 16 Aug 2019, available online:
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2019 07:48

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item