You are here

Borders, Histories, Existences

Borders, Histories, Existences
Gender and Beyond

First Edition
  • Paula Banerjee - Vice-Chancellor, The Sanskrit College and University

January 2010 | 296 pages | SAGE India
This is an insightful historical work on borders and bordered existences, with special emphasis on the gender dimensions of these existences. The author argues that the experiences of women living on borders and in borderlands are definitive of those of the vulnerable communities who bear the brunt of the complex border and security issues. The conditions of migrant women, women peace campaigners, and victims of human trafficking and mobile diseases are presented as markers of bordered existences. Their history is one of negotiations with structures of control, leading to insecurity, subversion, endurance and a different kind of existence. Thus, this book adopts a critical feminist history angle.

Borders, Histories, Existences: Gender and Beyond contends that borders are, by definition, lines of inclusion and exclusion established by the state. It analyses how states construct borders and try to make them static and rigid and how bordered existences, such as women, migrant workers, victims of human trafficking, etc., destabilise the rigid constructs. It explores the political conditions that have made borders problematic in post-colonial South Asia and how these borders have become regions of extreme control or violence.

The book contains new research data and original theories and would provide crucial information to those studying colonial and post-colonial history, politics and international relations, South Asia studies and sociology.

Introduction: Histories and Historians of Borders
Aliens in the Colonial World
Borders as Unsettled Markers: The Sino-Indian Border
The Line of Control: Kashmir
The Border People
Negotiating Differences: The Indian State and its Women in the Borderlands
Mobile Diseases and the Border
Border Laws and Conflicts in North-east India

Borders, Histories, Existences by Paula Banerjee is a gripping enquiry into the nature of South Asian borders… Banerjee’s brilliant analysis delves deep into the recent developments in border studies while at the same time going back to different histories only to give them a new rendering with the help of the contemporary concept of borders… Borders, Histories, Existences is a distinctive and broadening contribution to Asian studies. Students of politics, history and gender will find it very beneficial to their respective fields… The most attractive feature of Borders, Histories, Existences is its emphasis on borderlands as a unique form of existence instead of going for the notorious defense and strategic studies. Despite the large academic scope of the work it is quite accessible and can be used as an introduction by those who are interested in border studies.


Backed by data, historical fact and popular narrative, this timely book helps the reader to understand that human rights and security are complementary paradigms – one cannot be sustained without the other. 

Himal SouthAsian

For instructors

Please contact your Academic Consultant to check inspection copy availability for your course.

Select a Purchasing Option

ISBN: 9788132102267

SAGE Knowledge is the premier social sciences platform for SAGE and CQ Press book, reference and video content.

The platform allows researchers to cross-search and seamlessly access a wide breadth of must-have SAGE book and reference content from one source.