ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Body, Gender and Sexuality: Politics of Being and Belonging

This paper has been inspired by more than three decades of one's discovery of the body and its relationship to the self. As domination becomes unbearable, women have raised their voices and transgressed the boundaries set for them. Sometimes transgression has been expressed through mundane acts like challenging dress codes, veiling and cross-dressing, acts that give shape to their lives. The essay looks at the diverse constructions of women's bodies across castes, classes, regions, religions and other categories. Running through this is the role of the women's movement in dismantling these notions of the body. It then deals with the struggles and shifts in the understanding of the body over the decades. This is reflected in the campaigns undertaken by feminists along with voices from other movements. Finally, the paper places the complex unresolved concerns raised by the interface of feminists with movements of each of the marginalised peoples.

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