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

WomenSubscribe to Women

In Pursuit of Uniform-ity: The Hijab Row

The issue of the Hijab Ban holds several layers underneath it. On the surface, it appears that it is solely the case of students asking for amendments in the rulebook of "uniforms". Another angle is that of Women's dress (uniform in this case) which solicits the attention and control of the community and society. Furthermore, considering the current socio-political climate in India, one is bound not to ignore the possibility of the Islamophobic facet to the case of the Hijab Ban. Thus, a question that arises is how to make sense of the Hijab Ban? Is it a case of “School uniform”, “Women’s clothing”, or “Callous Islamophobia”?

The Invisibility of Women in Conflict Zones

This reading list examines women’s complex experience in conflict zones along with their potential to emerge as equal stakeholders in conflict zones for ensuring rehabilitation and mitigation. This analysis maps the risks and vulnerabilities it exposes them to, their experiences, how sexual offences are frequently trivialised in the volatile space that is a war zone, and more.

How COVID-19 Deepened the Gender Fault Lines in India’s Labour Markets

India has witnessed low levels of women’s labour force participation over the last four decades, with gaps of nearly 40 percentage points between the proportion of men and women in the labour force. Recent high-frequency data shows that COVID-19-induced lockdowns have had a disproportionate impact on women’s employment. Women bore the immediate impact of lockdowns, with 37.1% losing jobs (versus 27.7% men) in April 2020 and forming 73% of job losses in April 2021. Employment recovery has been slower for women. Prevailing sociocultural factors such as the increased burden of unpaid domestic work, gender digital divides, mobility restrictions, and the lack of institutional support at workplaces are discouraging women’s return to work. Even in January 2022, women’s labour force is 9.4% lower than January 2020 versus 1.6% for men. In this scenario, governments can support through gender-sensitive job-creation plans to expand women’s employment in the public and micro, small and medium enterprise sectors, and incentivise women’s entrepreneurship.

Do Female Lives Matter?

The rising cases of murder demand that murder as such should be considered a crime against women in India.

Revaluing Unpaid Work

The 2021 state assembly elections offered a unique and unexpected opportunity for the recognition of women’s unpaid domestic and care work through the promises of unconditional cash transfers. These cash transfers present feminists with a valuable opportunity to theorise the welfare state. This article uses primary data and in-depth interviews to evaluate one such scheme, namely the Orunodoi scheme in Assam.

Women-only!

While the repertoire of erotic performance of lavani has developed largely for male consumption, the recent emergence of women-only spectators of lavani is unusual and puzzling. How has lavani missed the moral outrage over the articulations of female sexual desire that pervades the public domain? This paper discusses how the possibilities for transgression of heteronormative desire in this phenomenon are complicated by caste and class divisions, the work–leisure binary, and the politics of the folk. It seeks to uncover the contested process of stigmatisation of lavani as vulgar and its simultaneous celebration as the folk which is embedded in the formation of lavani audiences.

Conservative Framing of the Hijab Issue and the Muslim Women’s Movement

Conservative and reactionary forces among Hindus and Muslims appear to be the major beneficiaries of the controversy over wearing hijab to schools. Such issues being the traps or detours laid by these forces, marginalised communities must choose their battlegrounds wisely. Instead of diverting the energy to the sectarian agenda of enforcing a dress code and perpetuating marginalisation, Muslim women’s movement should uphold the “Shaheen Bagh Spirit” of upholding constitutional values and unitedly fighting for rights and equality.

 

Entrepreneurship at the Grassroots

Taking the view that the official practice of clubbing medium, small, and microenterprises in one category is not sound, this study points out that these categories are substantially different from each other in terms of size, structure, resources, and business perspectives. Microenterprises, in particular, represent a different ecosystem whose nuances must be understood carefully so as to provide suitable inputs for an effective policy on them.

 

Don’t

Geared up with valour,

With strong determination,

A will as turbulent as her intention,

She is interrupted with a Don’t,

For each time she tries,

Women’s Work Participation in Rural Karnataka and Tamil Nadu

India ranks among a handful of countries in West Asia, North Africa, and South Asia to have the lowest female labour force participation rates in the world. The LFPR has further been declining for women in India in the last two decades. The article focuses on the south Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka to understand the proximate causes for these shifts. We combine temporal trends from the Employment and Unemployment surveys of the National Sample Survey Office with the literature on agrarian studies in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka to explain the changes in rural women’s labour force participation and summarise the challenges in studying temporal trends in women’s work.

 

Women Who Persisted Nevertheless

Fleeting Agencies: A Social History of Indian Coolie Women in British Malaya by Arunima Datta, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (Global South Asians), pp 240, 1,099.

Aligarh Self Reliance Alliance

This article puts forth the holistic training model of the Aligarh Self Reliance Alliance—successful in empowering destitute Muslim women—as a specimen before the policymakers to adopt initiatives for the empowerment of women of all the marginalised communities in India.

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