& BOUNDARIES: WOMEN IN INDIA’S
Ritu Menon &
Rs 300 Pb 2000
(UK, US rights sold. All others available.)
1947 India was simultaneously freed and divided.
The departure of the British was accompanied by
a bloody partition in which one million people perished
and over ten million were displaced in the largest
peace-time mass migration this century has recorded.
Borders & Boundaries attempts a feminist reading
of Partition providing, for the first time, testimonies
and memories of women caught in the turmoil of the
The authors make women not only visible, but central,
by looking at the general experience of violence,
dislocation and displacement from a gendered perspective.
Interviews with women survivors, social workers,
government functionaries form the core of the book,
supplemented by a narrative based on documents,
confidential reports, parliamentary debates, letters
and diaries. The women’s accounts are vivid
with memories of loss and violence, the experience
of abduction and widowhood, of rehabilitation and,
sometimes, even liberation. The counterpointing
of their voices with others, official and non-official,
highlights the relationship between women, communities
and the state; between women and their families;
and between women and their men.
is co-founder of Kali for Women, India's oldest feminist press, and of Women Unlimited, an associate of Kali for Women. She has written and published widely on women, is editor/co-author of
Making a Difference: Memoirs from the Women's
Movement in India; Unequal Citizens: A Study of Muslim
Women in India; Educating Muslim Girls: A Comparison of
Five Indian Cities; and From Mathura to Manorama: Resisting
Violence Against Women in India.
Her most recent
book is Out of Line:
a literary and political biography of Nayantara Sahgal.
She was awarded the Padma
Shri in 2011.
the Freedom from Hunger Campaign of the FAO
for over twenty years, and is a well-known
gender trainer. She has written extensively
on participatory training; on women; and on
sustainable development. She has also written
many songs on all these issues!