This book covers a range of issues and phenomena around gender-related violence in specific cultural and regional conditions. Using an interdisciplinary approach, it discusses historical and contemporary developments that trigger violence while highlighting the social conditions, practices, discourses, and cultural experiences of gender-related violence in India. Beginning with the issues of gender-based violence within the traditional context of Indian history and colonial encounters, it moves on to explore the connections between gender, minorities, marginalisation, sexuality, and violence, especially violence against Dalit women, disabled women, and transgender people. It traces and interprets similarities and differences as well as identifies social causes of potential conflicts. Further, it investigates the forms and mechanisms of political, economic, and institutional violence in the legitimation or de-legitimation of traditional gender roles. The chapters deal with sexual violence, violence within marriage and family, influence of patriarchal forces within factory-based gender violence, and global processes such as demand-driven surrogacy and the politics of literary and cinematic representations of gender-based violence. The book situates relevant debates about India and underlines the global context in the making of the gender bias that leads to violence both in the public and private domains.

An important contribution to feminist scholarship, this book will be useful to scholars and researchers of gender studies, women’s studies, history, sociology, and political science.

part I|39 pages


chapter |17 pages

Situating India

Challenges and propositions

chapter |20 pages

Researching Gender-based Violence in India

Issues, concepts, approaches

part II|82 pages

Historical Encounters and Cultures of Violence

chapter 1|15 pages

Of Devotional Zeal and Patriarchal Norms

Gender and violence in the Periya Purāṇam

chapter 2|18 pages

Silenced Women, Speaking Men

Locating gendered epistemic violence in nineteenth century German representations of India

chapter 3|19 pages

Gendered Behaviour

Religious norms and sexual deviance in the Basel India Mission in the first half of the nineteenth century

chapter 4|15 pages

Bodies in Pain

Violence and sexually ‘deviant’ male and transgender bodies in colonial India, 1862–1922

chapter 5|13 pages

Sati, Child Wives, and Prostitutes

Constituting violence and criminality in colonial India

part III|60 pages

Minorities and Marginalised Women

chapter 6|16 pages

Unregistered Concerns

Violence against women with disabilities in India

chapter 8|16 pages

A Genealogy of Muslim Feminism in Maharashtra

Systems and violence

chapter 9|14 pages


India’s third gender between discrimination and recognition

part IV|77 pages

Economies of Violence and Cultural Representations

chapter 10|15 pages

The Nirbhaya Murder Case

Women as the oddity in public transport

chapter 11|17 pages

Gender-based Violence of Economic Globalisation in Contemporary India

An intersectional approach to gender and violence

chapter 12|15 pages

Fifty Shades of Grey

A romance that we cannot resist?