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The question of individuality in non-European, and especially South Asian societies is a controversial one. Studies in anthropology and psychology undertaken in recent years onconcepts of person and self approach the problem by concentrating on ideologies; the question of practice remains largely neglected. This is the first study to examine the individual-dividual debate empirically from the - emic - perspective of decision making, observed over a two-year period among the Bakkarwal, Himalayan Muslim pastoralists. Of particular significance is thefact that the author bases her approach on the life cycle and on gender and status differences.