Hosted & Edited by: Sneha Visakha
Intro Music: Wehrmut by Godmode
Outro Music: Ophelia’s Blues by Audionautix
Assisted by: Ranu Tiwari
TW – References to male violence against women, hijab ban, hindu supremacist politics
In part 1 of the first episode of Season 2 of the Feminist City podcast series, Sneha Visakha is in conversation with Kavita Krishnan, noted feminist activist and author of Fearless Freedom. They discuss the question of women’s freedom, a decade after the 2012 Delhi gangrape and murder that saw massive country-wide protests, which Kavita was a part of. They talk about women’s autonomy, in the backdrop of the recent hijab ban in Karnataka’s educational institutions, situating it in the context of far-right Hindu supremacist politics and anti-Muslim bigotry. In the first part of the conversation, they explore topics such as feminist negotiations with the politics of dress, Hindu majoritaritarianism, links between social conservatism and neoliberalism, and the importance of safeguarding constitutional values of secularism in India’s heterogenous, multicultural and pluralistic society.
Kavita Krishnan is a communist feminist activist and author. She is the Secretary of All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA) and politburo member of The Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation. She completed her B.A. from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai and M. Phil in English Literature from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi (JNU). Her first book, Fearless Freedom, was published by Penguin in 2020. You can follow her on twitter here.
For background reading, we recommend perusing the literature provided below.
On Women’s Freedom:
- Fearless Freedom, Kavita Krishnan, Penguin India
- Kavita Krishnan argues in her new book that more autonomy means more safety for women in India, Kavita Krishnan, Scroll.in
- Kavita Krishnan on her book Fearless Freedom, what empowerment means, and why ‘unlearning’ propels equality [interview], Kavita Krishnan, Firstpost
- ‘Need to hold each other for freedom of women, freedom of all’: Kavita Krishnan [interview], Kavita Krishnan, The News Minute
- ‘We Need to Uncouple Protectiveness From Restrictions on Women’s Rights’: Kavita Krishnan [interview], Kavita Krishnan, The Wire
- Making a Feminist City – Planning Safety and Autonomy in the City, Sneha Visakha
- Hyderabad Encounter: The Response to Brutality Cannot Be Brutality, Vijay Raghavan, The Wire
On Hijab Ban:
- Majoritarianism is wearing the veil of debate, Kavita Krishnan, The Hindu
- Hijab issue: BJP’s motive is to otherise Muslims, establish Hindu supremacy, Kavita Krishnan, The Leaflet
- ‘Hijab Is Latest Pretext to Impose Apartheid on Muslim Women’, Say Feminist Orgs, The Quint
- While Upholding Hijab Ban, Karnataka HC Misconstrued Several Constitutional Principles, Gautam Bhatia, The Wire
- What Does International Human Rights Law Say About the Hijab Ban?, Rashmi Venkatesan, The Wire
- The Instigator: How MS Golwalkar’s virulent ideology underpins Modi’s India, Hartosh Singh Bal, The Caravan
- Rethinking Pluralism, Secularism and Tolerance – Anxieties of Coexistence’ review: The principle of justice, Uma Mahadevan Dasgupta, The Hindu
- The Two Husbands of Vera Tiscenko: Apostasy, Conversion, and Divorce in Late Colonial India, Rohit De, Cambridge University Press
- Modern Family, [Book Review: Family Values: Between Neoliberalism and the New Social Conservatism, Melinda Cooper], James Chappel, Dissent Magazine
Want to get in touch? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to her on Twitter, @magicanarchist.