Gender studies help in ascertaining role of women in literary field: Experts

Gender studies help in ascertaining role of women in literary field: Experts
Highlights

The field of gender studies helps to identify and ascertain the importance of women and the part they played in literary field and the society as a whole, suggested the speakers at a seminar at Kakatiya University.

Hanamkonda: The field of gender studies helps to identify and ascertain the importance of women and the part they played in literary field and the society as a whole, suggested the speakers at a seminar at Kakatiya University.

The speakers delivered lectures at the inaugural ceremony of the two-day national seminar on ‘Gender Studies and Indo-Canadian Literature’ organised by the department of English of the university here on Monday.

Addressing the gathering, the university Registrar and professor of English K Purushotham said men and women were used to be treated equally during the Vedic and pre-Vedic periods. However, later the societies have taken from being matriarchal to patriarchal over a period of time.

The work on women rights and the idea of feminism began in the last century with an objective of achieving gender equality. The father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi encouraged women to actively take part in Indian Freedom struggle, he said.

After the establishment of Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey (SNDT) Women's University in Mumbai in 1916, the field of gender studies has grown into a full-fledged discipline in Indian academia, Prof Purushotham explained.

An associate professor of English at Pondicherry Central University, H Kalpana Rao delivering the keynote address, opined that gender was more of social relationship and gender arrangements might change depending on the power structures one may exist in.

She felt that it was difficult to define gender and where it begins and ends. Quoting a sociologist RW Connell, she stated that gender was a matter of social relations within which individuals and groups act but not an expression of biology or a fixed dichotomy.

Kalpana Rao also explained the gender studies in the context of Indo-Canadian writers. The Director of the seminar and head of department of English M Prabhakar; Dean, faculty of arts, Prof V Srinivas; Chairperson, Board of Studies Deepa Jyothi; Prof S Latha; R Meghana Rao; retied Prof M Rajagopala Chary; TS Praveen Kumar; and others were present.

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