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To Chase a Miracle: A Study of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh Jay

To Chase a Miracle: A Study of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh - Jayanta Kumar Ray

Dhaka: The University Press, 1987, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Poor Dust Wrapper. Plain paper dust wrapper a little edgeworn and faded, more heavily at the spine and a little loose.

Contains: Tables; List of abbreviations; Appendix;

From the cover: “Grameen Bank today is the best known small loan, self-help credit institution in Bangladesh. The bank now has 286658 members being serviced through 346 branches in 6470 villages. It has made over 1900 million Takas ($61 million) in loans to its members at a monthly disbursal rate of 65 million Takas ($2 million).

No collateral is required of the members who use the loans to buy a milk cow, start a stationery shop, invest in the cattle trade or fertilize a small paddy field. Ninety-seven percent of these supposedly poor credit risks repay their loans. Seventy-five percent of the loanees are women. Is the Grameen Bank creating a social and economic impact on the rural society of Bangladesh? Is a non-revolutionary change taking place in rural Bangladesh?

Professor Jayanta Kumar Ray undertook this study of the Grameen Bank in 1984. He, set to investigate whether the bank is chasing a miracle of enabling villagers to rise above the poverty line without a transformation of property relations and land distribution.

He closely examines the functioning and the organisational strengths of the bank which acquired a great importance in a situation of non-revolutionary change.

Dr. Ray finds that members of the GB bureaucracy are willing to accept responsibility. There is no attempt to conceal figures nor any attempt to stifle imaginative measures by field staff. Strict discipline at the GB coexists with opportunities for self-criticism. He contends that GB has established a bureaucracy which is relevant to the removal of rural poverty from Bangladesh.

In the end Professor Ray poses and also attempts to answer the all-important question: How is it that the ruling elite of Bangladesh acquiesces in the existence and expansion of the GB?

Grameen Banks success has drawn the attention of important world leaders, social scientists and planning and development theorists the world over. Scores of self-help credit programmes in other countries have replicated the Grameen example.

The present study concludes with a thrilling and challenging message to the ruling circles of the low income countries: Rural poverty can be removed at a relatively low expense within a reasonably short period by a non-revolutionary government.

This candidly unorthodox study will serve its purpose if it can inspire benign uneasiness in reactionaries as well as radicals. Reactionaries may feel that, after all, they have to divert a comfortably low amount of national resources towards the removal of rural poverty. Radicals may wonder whether it is advisable to dedicate oneself to providing small but significant assistance to the rural poor rather than to avoid hard work and take shelter behind amateurish (though safe) verbiage about violent revolutions.”

Size: 8¾" x 5¾". Black boards. 246 pages.
To Chase a Miracle: A Study of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh Jay