South Asian women have frequently been conceptualized in colonial, academic and postcolonial studies, but their very categorization is deeply problematic. This book, informed by theory and enriched by in-depth fieldwork, overturns these unhelpful categorizations and alongside broader issues of self and nation assesses how South Asian identities are ‘performed'. What are the blind spots and erasures in existing studies of both race and gender? In what ways do South Asian women struggle with Orientalist constructions? How do South Asian women engage with ‘indo-chic?' What dilemmas face the South Asian female scholar? With a combination of the most recent feminist perspectives on gender and the South Asian diaspora, questions of knowledge, power, space, body, aesthetics and politics are made central to this book. Building upon a range of experiences and reflecting on the actual conditions of the production of knowledge, South Asian Women in the Disapora represents a challenging contribution to any consideration of gender, race, culture and power.
Table of Contents
ContentsAcknowledgementsviiNotes on Contributorsix1(Dis)locating South Asian Women in the AcademyNirmal Puwar and Parvati Raghuram1Part I South Asian Women and Paradigmatic (Im)possibilities2Melodramatic Postures and ConstructionsNirmal Puwar193Still 'In Progress?' - Methodological Dilemmas, Tensions and Contradictions in Theorizing South Asian Muslim WomenFauzia Ahmad434Fashioning the South Asian Diaspora: Production and Consumption TalesParvati Raghuram675Conceptualizing Emigrant Indian Female Subjectivity: Possible Entry PointsMala Pandurang87Part II Embodying South Asian Femininities6Romantic Transgressions in the Colonial Zone: Reading Mircea Eliade's Bengal Nights and Maitreyi Devi's It Does Not DieNandi Bhatia97 7Undressing the DiasporaBakirathi Mani117 8Re-producing South Asian Wom(b)en: Female Feticide and the Spectacle of CultureTej Purewal137 9Gendered Embodiments: Mapping the Body-Politic of the Raped Woman and the Nation in BangladeshNayanika Mookherjee157Part III Engagements10A Kiss is Just a Kiss. . . Or Is It? South Asian Lesbian and Bisexual Women and the Construction of SpaceRani Kawale17911'Changing Views': Theory and Practice in a Participatory Community Arts ProjectSamina Zahir19912South Asian Women and the Question of Political OrganizationShaminder Takhar21513Engendering Diasporic IdentitiesHasmita Ramji227Index243
Nirmal Puwar Senior Research Fellow and Lecturer in Sociology,University College Northampton Parvati Raghuram International Studies Lecturer, Nottingham Trent University