Offers a compelling and comprehensive account of the expanding horizons of feminist organising, and of the vitality of women’s movements in India.
The 1990s were a turning point for the Indian Women’s Movement (IWM). New challenges complicated old issues, affecting analyses and strategies for mobilising. Feminists were pushed into questioning the universal category of ‘woman’, by women from minority communities and marginalised castes or sexualities, or by those with disabilities.
Gaining Ground maps these new contours by taking up five critical interventions made by movements that grew out of the IWM but established distinct identities around their concerns. Muslim women came together around community identity; Dalit women highlighted gender and caste patriarchy; sex workers challenged prevalent definitions of work; queer politics critiqued heteronormative sexuality; and women with disabilities raised searching questions about what constitutes an ideal body.
Sadhna Arya offers a compelling and comprehensive account of the expanding horizons of feminist organising, and of the vitality of women’s movements in India in the 21st century.
Sadhna Arya is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science, Satyawati College (E), University of Delhi. She was Senior Fellow with the Centre for Women’s Development Studies (CWDS) in 2004-05, and the Indian Council for Social Science Research (ICSSR) from 2013 to 2015. She is actively involved with women’s rights issues and has written extensively on the subject. She is the author of Women, Gender Equality and the State and the Occasional Paper on The National Commission for Women–Assessing Performance, and has also co-edited Narivadi Rajniti – Sangharsh Evam Mudde and Poverty, Gender and Migration.