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Dialogue on Women and Social Change in India

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Dr. Manjula Rathaur delivered a lecture in Global Studies Programme Colloquium at Institut für Soziologie, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany

Dr. Manjula Rathaur delivered a lecture in Global Studies Programme Colloquium at Institut für Soziologie, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany


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  • 1. WOMEN AND SOCIAL CHANGE IN INDIA: SOME SOCIOLOGICAL INSIGHTS Dr. Manjula Rathaur Senior Fellow, ICSSR, New Delhi, Women Studies Programme, JNU.
  • 2. Three Icons of Women Empowerment- Indira Gandhi, Pratibha Devisingh Patil & Mayavati20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 2
  • 3. Contents I. Ideology about Women & Society in Ancient India II. Historical Phases of Changing Status of Women in India III. Modernization of Indian Tradition IV. Major Spheres of Changes about Women in India V. Areas of Present Day Concerns VI. Summary20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 3
  • 4. I. Ideology about Women & Society in Ancient India “Yatra narystu pujyante tatra ramante Devata” Shiva & Shakti Approach- Concept of Ardha Nariswar Man & Woman are complementary to each other-Sita Ram, Radhe Krishna.20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 4
  • 5. II. Historical Phases of Women Status 3,000 B.C & Before- Vedic Period:Era of Equality 1,000 B.C to 600 A.D. Jain & Buddhist Period: Freedom of Spiritual & other activities 200 B.C. to 300 A.D. SMRITI Period: Beginning of restrictions 1300 A.D.- 1600 A.D Bhakti Movement Period: Challenge against the sexism of Smritis & freedom of expression 1400 A.D-1700 A.D- Medieval /Mughal Period(1526-1707): Deterioration of Women Status( PURDAH/ Child Marriage/ SATI). 1700-1947 British Period- Ban on widow burning(Sati & Child Marriages). 1947-2011 Post Colonial Period: Dramatic Developments.20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 5
  • 6. III. Modernization of Indian Tradition(From the colonialto the post-colonial era): Social reform Movements(Raja Rammohan Roy, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, Jyotiba Phulle, Vivekanand, Mahatma Gandhi, Annie Besant). Westernization/Colonial Modernization Sanskritization Urbanization & Industrilization Democratization Education Women’s Movement20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 6
  • 7. IV. Major Spheres of Changes about Women & Society Legal Article 14- Equality with man. Article 39 D- Equal pay for equal work. Article 15(3) Special provision by the state. National Policy for Empowerment of Women, 2001. Law against Domestic Violence, 2005. Educational Rise in literacy from 6%(1947) to 65%(2011) 12% of women in age group 17 & above years are in higher education. Economic and Occupational Right to share in family property Freedom of occupation-largest number professionally qualified women in the world 89.5% of female labor in agriculture & allied sector 30% of workforce in software industry is female Socio-cultural Reform of Hindu Personal Law to give right to inheritance Raising the age at marriage to 18 years Dowry Prohibition Act 1985 Political 50% reservation in local self government bodies20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 7 National Commission on Women
  • 8. V. Areas of Present Day Concerns: Declining Gender Ratio(See the map about gender ratio) Maternal mortality- 2nd highest in the world Violence against women(see the table about it). Female illiteracy( see the map of female literacy) Feminization of poverty- 35% of BPL Households are female headed ( see the map about women in workforce) Political marginalization- Less than 10% seats in parliament and state legislative bodies are occupied by women.20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 8
  • 9. Distribution of Sex Ratio (No. of Women/1000 Men ) (2001)20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 9
  • 10. State Wise Female Literacy Rate(2001)20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 10
  • 11. Female Main Workers(2001)20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 11
  • 12. Empowering Women through Affirmative Action: Percent Seats Heldby Women in Parliament and in the Gram Panchayats in 2006 Percent Seats Held by Women inStates Parliament Gram PanchayatsAndhra Pradesh 7.1 35.74Assam 0.0 39.2Bihar 7.5 46.68Gujarat 3.8 33.33Haryana 10.0 36.65Himachal Pradesh 25.0 39.13Jammu & Kashmir 16.7 ⃰Karnataka 7.1 43.33Kerala 10.0 35.32Madhya Pradesh 6.9 34.56Orissa 9.5 35.83Punjab 15.4 35.03Rajasthan 8.0 35.3Tamil Nadu 10.3 33.69Uttrar Pradesh 8.8 38.85West Bengal 9.5 36.63NCT Delhi 14.3 ⃰All India 8.3 36.75 Source: Ministry of Women & Child Development, Govt. of India, 2009.20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 12
  • 13. Percentage of Women Age 15-49 who Have ExperiencedPhysical or Sexual Violence in India and States, 2005-06State Physical or sexual violenceBihar 55.6Madhya Pradesh 46.8Rajasthan 44.6Tamil Nadu 38.7West Bengal 38.3Uttrar Pradesh 38.1Assam 36.5Orissa 36.2Andhra Pradesh 33.8Punjab 30.9Chhattisgarh 30.1Maharashtra 29.2Haryana 29.0Gujarat 27.8Karnataka 19.9Kerala 17.3Delhi 16.5Jammu & Kashmir 12.9Himachal Pradesh 5.6India 35.4 Source: MoWCD, Govt. of India20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 13
  • 14. VI.Summary: 5 Stages of Social Change & Women inIndia since independence 1. Women’s Welfare(1950s) 2. Women Development(1960s) 3. Women in Development(1970s) 4. Women and Development(1980S) 5. Women in Decision-making (1990s and beyond).20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 14
  • 15. Thank you20.05.2011 Präsentationstitel 15