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

Articles by Kalpana KannabiranSubscribe to Kalpana Kannabiran

Legal Clinics and Adivasi Rights

A national workshop in Hyderabad deliberated on adivasi rights and the organisation of legal clinics, addressing the issues faced by the vulnerable communities among them.

A New Beginning?

How may ICSSR and its network of institutes enable the growth of social sciences? It is time to move beyond assessments and towards building different possibilities into an archaic system, using texts of different kinds and bringing the diversity and dynamism of the world outside. The need is to frame research questions differently and reimagine higher education in the process.

On the Telangana Trail

What is Telangana? Why does it stir such powerful sentiments? What are the boundaries between the people and the leadership? In an attempt to understand the multilayered articulation of the demand for a separate Telangana, we decided to speak to a cross section of people on their participation and their aspirations - people across political formations and social backgrounds. Our travels took us to small farmers, pastoralists, intellectuals, coal miners, schoolteachers, weavers, traders and dhobis; Muslim, adivasi, dalit and student leaders; we attended meetings in adivasi hamlets, in working class urban neighbourhoods and we visited shibirams (tents) across the region and spoke to people on relay hunger strikes. We see quite clearly the emergence of a new politics that is committed to deliberating over the meanings of democracy and direct action. People's demand for Telangana elaborates a complex set of arguments in relation to investment, employment, education, land, water, and resources. But more importantly it has to do with self-rule, dignity and self-respect, which are the fundamental premises of the Telangana movement. The separate state is seen as only the first step towards democratisation.

The Law, Gender and Women

The essays in this edition of the Review of Women's Studies, on the theme "Women and Law", look at women's lifeworlds, in some parts, and the extent to which the law has touched them. Where the law has touched lives, the quality of that engagement - legislative, interpretive, positive, restitutive, punitive - merits critical examination because it is of crucial importance to the precarious standing of women in a patriarchal set-up. While briefly pointing out the areas the essays tackle, this introduction broadens the scope of the review to a discussion on gender, law and violence.

Judicial Meanderings in Patriarchal Thickets: Litigating Sex Discrimination in India

This essay spotlights judicial twists on the issue of sex discrimination over the last six decades through an examination of reported cases from the high courts and the Supreme Court of India. These cases by themselves do not exhaust the field of non-discrimination, but point to one site where there have been protracted deliberations. This sociological reading looks at the ethnographic detail that texts present, the process and points of deliberation and contestation among petitioners, respondents and courts, and the multiple implications of jurisprudential resolution for genderbased discrimination. It follows the plural threads of reasoning with respect to women's status, position, vulnerabilities and rights, and attempts to understand their ideological underpinnings.

Sociology of Caste and the Crooked Mirror: Recovering B R Ambedkar's Legacy

Marking a century of debate, scholarship and politics, three texts by B R Ambedkar, M N Srinivas and Kancha Ilaiah, when read in intersection, present rich possibilities both for an understanding of caste and more importantly for a re-examination of the sociology/legal ethnography of caste and its genealogy. Ambedkar offered a multilayered, counter-hegemonic reading of caste that was lost on at least three generations of sociologists and possibly accounts for several of the conservative trends we have seen in the social sciences in institutions of higher learning. What is particularly interesting is the silence in the field of sociological work for at least five decades after Ambedkar's contribution to the sociology of caste.

Making the Forked Tongue Speak ...An Ethnography of the Self

The consciousness of caste is constitutive of the self in caste society. It is also embedded in the realities of class, which structure the experience of bare life itself. In order to rupture caste formations, it is necessary to engage self-consciously in the politics of becoming, regulating notions of the self, de-schooling and politicising the self in new ways that push you to belonging elsewhere. This essay maps the trajectory of becoming, through an exploration of the textures of subjectivities by revisiting family folklore, personal experiences and professional practices.

Chunduru: On the Road to Justice

As India prepared to celebrate 60 years of independence, a special court delivered its verdict on the case relating to the massacre of dalits in Andhra Pradesh in August 1991. This article goes back to the carnage and traces how the accused were convicted, thereby instilling a sense of hope and trust among the many victims of violence.

Taslima Case: Accountability of Elected Representatives

Two organisations have filed a petition in the Andhra Pradesh High Court seeking the removal of four legislators and deregistration of their political party for leading an attack on the Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen in Hyderabad recently. The petitioners believe that these men have perjured the constitutional oath taken by all legislators before entering office.

What Is Justice for Survivors of Gujarat 2002?

The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women recently pulled up the government of India for an inadequate response on the 2002 Gujarat riots despite specific queries by the committee on the issue. The concluding comments of the CEDAW offer a significant advocacy tool for human rights organisations working to secure justice for the riot victims.


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