Towards reparative readings
DOI link for Towards reparative readings
Towards reparative readings book
On the one hand, debates of over two decades now make us sharply aware of the vital importance of the intersecting multiple axes of power in shaping patriarchy and hence of the need to acknowledge mutual differences and inequalities. On the other hand, the high tide of Hindutva nationalistic jingoism sweeps us all together as ‘anti-nationalist,’ as equally dangerous to the Hindutvavaadi nation. The question would perhaps be to ask how we could deploy the insights about the end of ‘romantic sisterhood’ to produce a thorough critique of feminist practice. I contend that for this to happen, intersectional analysis needs to be applied as a tool of feminist self-transformation, acknowledged as integral to lived feminist ethics and not merely as something that figures in the knowledge that we produce. This essay is an attempt to think aloud this challenge and what it entails, from Kerala, a society where feminism is irrevocably pluralized at present but where feminists do face the Hindutvavaadi threat of exclusion as ‘immoral’ and ‘anti-national.’ I propose a new mode of engagement, feminist maitri which may give rise to what Eve Sedgwick called ‘non-paranoid’ readings alongside the necessary readings of the ills that hamper trust-building in the field of feminist politics.