Because I Have a Voice

For those of you interested in learning more about the queer movement in India, this book is a great place to start: Because I Have a Voice: Queer Politics in India, edited by Arvind Narrain and Gautam Bhan. This is an informative collection, comprised of academic essays, activist accounts, and personal narratives. Narrain and Bhan’s introduction is especially useful in delineating the uniqueness of South Asian sexuality studies in relation to postcolonial studies, legal battles, and debates over terms and definitions. Alok Gupta’s essay on class dynamics in the queer movement opens up a series of questions about the influence of globalized gay identities and (limited) access to queer resources. Nivedita Menon offers a powerful polemic about the need for South Asian feminists to take up compulsory heterosexuality as a founding structure of patriarchy. Gautam Bhan looks at Section 377, and the need for legal reform to be included in the larger political movement of queer activism. The personal narratives, though often brief, are moving accounts of queer life in India. Highly recommended.

Because I Have a Voice is published by Yoda Press, a wonderful publisher based out of New Delhi. Recently, they've introduced a new book series called "Sexualities," which includes a number of very interesting titles. Check out Gayatri Reddy's With Respect to Sex as well; it's a deeply moving ethnography of hijra communities living in and around Hyderabad. You can access the website for Yoda Press here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I highly recommend this book. It was great!