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The Journey of a Southern Feminist

The Journey of a Southern Feminist

March 2018 | 300 pages | SAGE Publications Pvt. Ltd

This book is a collection of Devaki Jain’s writings and lectures related to the women’s movement in India and interventions in policy and fact base drawn from that experience. A journey of over six decades, it presents important interventions in the design of national and international development policy.

Beginning with a fascinating account of Jain’s own evolution into a feminist, each chapter starts with an introductory note locating it in her own professional journey. The initial chapters of the book underline an important fact—better understood now but a radical intervention when Jain wrote it—that women’s reasoning and the ideas that emerge from their lived experience need to be converted into macro frameworks of development. The later chapters champion the role of local power, in economic planning led by women, in healing inequalities. They also pose a feminist challenge to inherited knowledge usually created and argued for by men. In her most recent work, Jain reiterates that poor women’s struggles, strategies and needs should inform development strategy at the local level. At a global level, she talks of how women and their networks in the South are offering ideas on rethinking development.

Introduction: The Birthing of a Feminist and Her Journey
Development as if Women Mattered: Can Women Build a New Paradigm?
Advances in Feminist Theory: An Indian Perspective
The Leadership Gap: A Challenge to Feminists
Minds, Not Bodies: Expanding the Notion of Gender in Development
Indigenising Feminism
Challenges for Women in India in the New Millennium
Globalism and Localism: Negotiating Feminist Space
Women’s Participation in the History of Ideas and the Reconstruction of Knowledge
Feminist Networks, People’s Movements and Alliances: Learning from the Ground
To Be or Not to Be: Problems in Locating Women in Public Policy
What Is Wrong with Economics? Can the Aam Aurat Redefine Economic Reasoning?
The First Challengers: The Feminists of the South
The Evolution of Ideas: A Feminist’s Reflections on the Partnership with the UN System
Looking Back at the South Commission

“This inspiring book challenges mainstream ideas about development, held in both the global South and the global North [... and] should be read by everyone concerned to reduce inequality and end poverty.”

Diane Elson,
Emeritus Professor, University of Essex

“Decades ago Devaki Jain highlighted the significance of unpaid and unrecognised women’s work. This valuable collection of [Devaki Jain’s] important contributions shows how much she has innovated to expand analytical and empirical approaches in many other areas.”

Jayati Ghosh,
Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi

“A must-read for any feminist, development economist and activist.”

Winnie Byanyima,
Executive Director, Oxfam International

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ISBN: 9789352806218