Their stories are urgent and forcefully articulated – and Nine Paths gives us the chance to hear them.
On an island at the eastern edge of India, rural, remote and dense with jungle, is a Muslim village. In an ever-shifting landscape of mangroves and rivers, the women here dwell among contradictions, constrictions and change in a place where one’s neighbours are often too close for comfort.
Nine Paths follows the lives of nine of these women, and their families, over the course of a year – from one monsoon season to another. There are weddings to celebrate and deaths to mourn, difficult marriages to navigate and tragedies to overcome, as we observe the everyday drudgery and unexpected turmoil, and the dreams of something better.
Revelatory, lyrical and immersive, this is an extraordinary book that takes you deep into these ordinary women’s worlds. Anthropologist Lexi Stadlen spent sixteen months in this village, talking, listening, and getting to know these women, who were willing to share their complicated, fascinating lives. Their stories are urgent and forcefully articulated – and this book gives us the chance to hear them.