A fiery proponent of the independence of women, Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain (1880-1932) was denied formal education, but emerged as a leading thinker and writer of her time and founded a school for girls. Set against the backdrop of surging nationalism and reform in the twentieth-century Bengal, this selection of writings by Rokeya captures the true spirit of a South Asian proto-feminist who is every bit as radical as her contemporaries-Virginia Woolf and Charlotte Perkins Gilman. From "Sultana's Dream", a canonical work of Rokeya, to writings on women's status in a patriarchal set-up, her comments on "feeble" Bengali society, purdah [veil] system, religion, and the idea of a perfect housewife among others, this work will open up a factual, fictional, and fantastical-utopian world, which remained largely unknown and unheard outside Bengal.
Author: Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain
Publisher: The Feminist Press at CUNY
Release Date: 2013-09-02
Sultana’s Dream, first published in 1905 in a Madras English newspaper, is a witty feminist utopia—a tale of reverse purdah that posits a world in which men are confined indoors and women have taken over the public sphere, ending a war nonviolently and restoring health and beauty to the world. "The Secluded Ones" is a selection of short sketches, first published in Bengali newspapers, illuminating the cruel and comic realities of life in purdah.
Author: Mohammad Quayum
Release Date: 2013-08-22
Genre: Social Science
In The Essential Rokeya, Mohammad A. Quayum collates Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain’s best work in English, as well as Quayum’s own translation of her works from Bengali into English, which encapsulate the author’s imagination as a foremother of South Asian feminism.
Author: Bharati Ray
Publisher: OUP India
Release Date: 2012-09-13
Genre: Social Science
Set against the backdrop of surging nationalism and reform in twentieth-century Bengal, this book recounts the lives of two outstanding women-Sarala Devi Chaudhurani and Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain-and compares their work, their approaches and their ideologies.
Author: Rokeẏā (Begama)
Publisher: Penguin Books India
Release Date: 2005
Genre: Social Science
Widely regarded as Bengal's earliest and boldest feminist writer, Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain (1880-1932) was a pioneering and creative educationist and social activist, and the school she founded in Kolkata, the Sakhawat Memorial School for Girls, still thrives. Sultana's Dream, written in English (1905), is a delightful satirical work set in Ladyland, where the men are in purdah and the women go out and work. An extraordinary novella with generous dashes of melodrama and romance, disasters and coincidences, Padmarag, written in Bengali (1924) and translated here for the first time, describes a female-founded and female-administered community set in contemporary Bengal, where women from diverse regions and ethnicities, with unhappy histories of patriarchal oppression, better their lot by concrete social action. Both Sultana's Dream and Padmarag discuss in playful, fascinating, and intelligent ways the question of women's education.
Comprising translations of women's writings of Brahmo, Hindu and Muslim writers of undivided Bengal (involving present-day Bangladesh), which were published in well-known Bengali periodicals (between 18651947), such as Bamabodhini Patrika, Prabasi, Antahpur, Bharati, Bangadarshan,Bharatlakshmi, Saogat, Nabanoor, and so on, this volume is the third reader compiled by the School of Women's Studies, Jadavpur University, for the new Masters' level courses in women's studies. Focussing on a period, of reform, conflict, change and debate, the reader explores the multi-layered social conversation about women's issues and maps the changes in the life practices and beliefs of women as reflected in their writings with the progression of time. While there is Taherannesa writing in 1865 in Bamabodhini Patrika, and appealing, 'O civilised men do not remain neglectful of educating women', there is Saratkumari Chaudhurani's article in Bharati, published in 1914, where she upholds the initiative of Swarnakumari Devi's Sakhi Samiti for spreading education and literacy amidst women, helping widows, aiding orphans, and so on. Hence, the discourse that surfaces also follows the path of a historical narrative. This volume traces issues like relations between men and women, and amongst women themselves to more 'public' concerns like women's education and employment; child marriage, seclusion of women and the position of widows. It upholds the dichotomy between the private and the public, and the prachina, the traditional, and the navina, the 'new', with the emerging woman proposing an alternate way of life, thereby extending the woman's question beyond every aspect of women and men's social existence; putting these writings in a larger context of reform, change and conflict; and projecting the discourse on gender issues as shaped by power relations between classes, castes and communities cohabiting in society.
Author: Sita Anantha Raman
Release Date: 2009-06-08
Genre: Social Science
Are Indian women powerful mother goddesses, or domestic handmaidens trailing behind men in literacy, wages, opportunities, and rights? Have they been agents of their own destinies, or voiceless victims of patriarchy? Behind these colorful over-simplifications lies the reality of many feminine personas belonging to various classes, ethnicities, religions, and castes. This two-volume set looks at Indian history from ancient to modern times, revealing precisely why ideas of gender rights were not static across eras or regions. Raman's work is a reflection on the various ways in which women in a non-Western culture have developed and expressed their own feminist agenda. Are Indian women powerful mother goddesses, or domestic handmaidens trailing behind men in literacy, wages, opportunities, and rights? Have they been agents of their own destinies, or voiceless victims of patriarchy? Behind these coloful over-simplifications lies the reality of many feminine personas belonging to various classes, ethnicities, religions, and castes. This two-volume set looks at Indian history from ancient to modern times, revealing precisely why ideas of gender rights were not static across eras or regions. Raman's work is a reflection on the various ways in which women in a non-western culture have developed and expressed their own feminist agenda. Individual chapters highlight the enduring legacies of many important male and female figures, illustrating how each played a key role in modifying the substance of women's lives. Political movements are examined as well, such as the nationalist reform movement of 1947 in which the ideal of Indian womanhood became central to the nation and the push for independence. Also included is a survey of women in contemporary India and the role they played in the resurgence of militant Hindu nationalism. Aside from being an engaging and readable narrative of Indian history, this set integrates women's issues, roles, and achievements into the general study of the times, providing a clear presentation of the social, cultural, religious, political, and economic realities that have helped shape the identity of Indian women.
Author: Osie Turner
Publisher: The Forlorn Press
Release Date: 2013-11-05
Genre: Social Science
Few realize that women played a pivotal role in the development of science fiction. Even fewer know that feminist science fiction became popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This collection contains a broad spectrum of this genre, many of which have been all but forgotten. Ten novels and short stories and two appendices round out this volume. Table of Contents: Herland By Charlotte Perkins Stetson Gilman Sultana’s Dream By Rokheya Shekhawat Hossein Mizora: A Prophecy By Mary E. Bradley Man's Rights By Annie Denton Cridge Friend Island By Francis Stevens Three Hundred Years Hence By Mary Griffith A Wife Manufactured to Order By Alice W. Fuller Unveiling a Parallel By Alice Ilgenfriz Jones and Ella Merchant A Dream of the Twenty-First Century By Winnifred Harper Cooley The Republic of the Future By Anna Bowman Dodd Appendix 1: Biographical Sketches of the Authors Appendix 2: Other Notable Female Science Fiction Authors
Author: Thomas More
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2008-11-13
A unique edition of three early modern utopian texts, using a contemporary translation of More's Utopia and examining the Renaissance world view as shown by these writers. The edition includes the illustrative material that accompanied early editions of Utopia, full chronologies of the authors, notes, and glossary.
Author: Mike Ashley
Publisher: Peter Owen Publishers
Release Date: 2011-05-01
Rare jewels of Victorian fiction highlight the fantastic contributions made by women writers in the early development of science fictionA selection of early science fiction short stories by women are collected here, along with an introduction exploring the contributions women made in the early development of the field—in particular the different perspectives they cast on the wonders or fears that technological and scientific advances may bring. The contributions of women to the history of science fiction and to the genre's development has been sorely overlooked. Frankenstein, generally reckoned as the first true work of science fiction, was by Mary Shelley, and one of the first utopian works written in America was also by a woman, Mary Griffith. A companion volume to his acclaimed The Darker Sex, Mike Ashley's latest collection is more essential reading by such female writers as Mary Shelley, Clare Winger Harris, Adeline Knapp, and many others.
This charming book The Many Worlds of Sarala Devi and The Tagores and Sartorial Styles, as the titles suggest, contain two separate but related writings on the Tagores. The Tagores were a pre-eminent family which became synonymous with the cultural regeneration of India, specifically of Bengal, in the nineteenth century. The first writing is a sensitive translation of Sarala Devis memoirs from the Bengali, Jeevaner Jharapata, by Sukhendu Ray. It is the first autobiography written by a nationalist woman leader of India. Sarala Devi was Rabindranath Tagores niece and had an unusual life. The translation unfolds, among other things, what it was like to grow up in a big affluent house Jorasanko, that had more than 116 inmates and a dozen cooks! The second writing by Malavika Karlekar is a photo essay, creatively conceived, visually reflecting the social and cultural trends of the times, through styles of dress, jewellery and accoutrements. The modern style of wearing a sari was introduced by Jnanadanandini Devi, a member of the Tagore family. The introduction by the well-known historian, Bharati Ray, very perceptively captures the larger context of family, marriage, womens education and politics of the time which touched Sarala Devis life. She points out that if memoirs are a kind of social history then womens diaries record social influences not found in official accounts and are therefore, a rich source of documentation.
Author: Ann Chamberlin
Release Date: 2006
Genre: Social Science
Learn how the seclusion of women can be used as a feminist defense against exploitation?and as an empowering force Internationally acclaimed author Ann Chamberlin's book, A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East: The Veil in the Looking Glass is a critical interdisciplinary examination of the practice of seclusion of women throughout the Middle East from its beginnings. This challenging exploration discusses the reasons that seclusion may not be as oppressive as is presently generally accepted, and, in fact, may be an empowering force for women in both the West and East. Readers are taken on a controversial, belief-bending journey deep into the surprising origins and diverse aspects of female seclusion to find solid evidence of its surprising use as a defense against monolithic cultural exploitation. The author uses her extensive knowledge of Middle Eastern culture, language, and even archeology to provide a convincing assertion challenging the Western view that seclusion was and is a result of women's oppression. A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East goes beyond standard feminist rhetoric to put forth shocking notions on the real reasons behind women's seclusion and how it has been used to counteract cultural exploitation. The book reviews written evidence, domestic and sacred architecture, evolution, biology, the clan, the environment for seclusion, trade, capital and land, slavery, honor, and various other aspects in a powerful feminist argument that seclusion is actually a valuable empowering force of protection from the influence of today's society. The text includes thirty black and white figures with useful descriptions to illustrate and enhance reader understanding of concepts. A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East discusses at length: prehistoric evidence of seclusion the sense of honor in the Middle East a balanced look at the Islamic religion the true nature of the harem the reasons for the oppression by the Taliban the positive aspects of 'veiling' seclusion as a defense against capitalist exploitation and other challenging perspectives! A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East is thought-provoking, insightful reading for all interested in women's history, feminism, and the history and culture of the Middle East.