Sunday, March 22, 2009

Gender and Culture - Assingments for evaluation

Choose from any one of the activities below and respond with a 2000 word essay. You can also select any other topic that relates to the course in order to submit your assignment. Please discuss with the instructor before proceeding with the latter option.

* What is the specific relationship between the concepts “gender” and “culture”, and why are they relevant in understanding the history of women and of women’s movements in India?
* List one or two debates or controversies in recent times and examine how the culture question enters the picture vis a vis these.
* Examine the trajectory of the relationship between the personal and the political in feminist thinking.
* Examine the space of your college and look at the various ways in which this space is constructed by and in turn constructs gender relations. Think about the spaces that men and women occupy at different times. Then also think of how these spaces are not just gendered but also classed.
* Examine the cases where there has been violence against romantic couples belonging to different castes or religions. Think about why these couples are seen to be a threat to ‘Indian culture’.
* Track the recent Pink Chaddi campaign as the response to the assault on women in a Mangalore pub. How successful do you think this campaign is? What are the limitations of this campaign?
* Using any one example comment on the nature of the women’s movement’s engagement with law.
* Read this interview with Ruth Manorama who is the founder of the National Federation of Dalit Women (NFDW, founded in 1987): Meena Kandaswamy Interviews Ruth Manorama. What is the critique of Ruth Manorama about the ‘mainstream women’s movement’? How are the community and caste identities understood in the interview?



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  2. Could you please give a few specific email addresses of people we can talk to in order to go ahead with our own topics for the assignment?
    Thank you.