Vultures and Feminism @ BYOB Party in April 2017 (Part 8)

Sudharsan spoke about Joby Josephs’ Feast of Vultures: The Hidden Business of Democracy in India. The writer is an investigative journalist and the book is an expose of the famous business houses of the country, for which the author is facing some legal flak. The story is about how corruption is an integral thread of the economy in India and how fixers make things possible in spite of the red tape. This is a blessing and a curse at the same time. So while big businesses flourish in the nation, something is rotten in the system. The book is an important read for those who want to understand how India works today and how much needs to be changed, going ahead.

Abhaya read Seeing like a Feminist by Nivedita Menon, a professor at JNU. He found this read at Zubaan Books. He believes that book is a more systematic Indian rendition of what feminism really means here and how it changed from being about the victim to being about agents of change. The book talks about a variety of things including the history of feminism in India, surrogacy, LGBT rights, sexual violence and lactating fathers.

Some essential feminist reads were discussed including The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir and the Golden Notebook by Dorris Lessing. Mention was made of M.T. Vasudevan Nair’s Malayalam novel Nalukettua novel that is set within the matrilineal confines of Nair society. The prospect of property being passed on from mother to daughter seemed unusual to the readers at the group. though it was concluded that though the matrilineal system has created a more emancipated concept of womanhood in Kerala, male domination is no alien concept there.

And with that, we come to the end of this session.

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