My Other, My Self

Intimate Others: Marriage and Sexualities in India, edited by Samita Sen, Ranjita Biswas and Nandita Dhawan is Stree, Kolkata's next book.

Although the challenge to the hegemonic status of the institution of marriage in India is grabbing the limelight in popular media, it has received comparatively less attention in the social sciences. This path-breaking collection presents an analysis of marriage from historical, social, cultural, psychological and legal perspectives. Changes wrought by globalization, by information technology and by the increasing social visibility of queer life forms and practices have had considerable impact on the homogeneous imagination of the ‘Indian family’, with the traditional marriage system as its base. The essays in this collection look behind and beyond the institutional framework of marriage to critique the structures of our everyday lives and to explore new horizons and possibilities in the domain of the intimate.

The collection is divided into four parts, moving from a historical perspective to present-day concerns: Part I, ‘Historicizing Marriage: Marriages Are Made in Scriptures’; Part II, ‘Contextualizing Marriage: Class, Caste, Masculinity and Violence’; Part III, ‘Representing Marriage: Sex, Conjugality and Videotapes’; and Part IV, ‘Recasting Marriage: Singlehood, Coupledom and Intimate Others’.

Samita Sen (Director) Ranjita Biswas (Lecturer) and Nandita Dhawan (Research Coordinator) are all at the School of Women’s Studies, Jadavpur University.

In paperback, in our Gender and Culture sections, 400 pages, Rs 450. ISBN 9788196076014

Mandira Sen, the stree behind Stree has made a habit of being an early champion of the unusual! You can learn about Some-Things-You-May-Not-Know-About-Stree on their Wikipedia page, Only fitting, since the documentary filmmaker Bishakha Datta, one of the few members of the Wikimedia board of trustees (the only stree and the only Indian) is a Stree author (And Who Will Make the Chapatis? A Study of All-Women Panchayats in Maharashtra). Not surprising, given Stree's admirable track record...