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Feminist Perspective
Author : Usha Bande and Atma Ram
ISBN : 81-7033-778-X
Edition : 2003
Pages : 188
Price : Rs.395 / US$30
Binding : Hardback
Territory : World
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Since independence, the Indian short story has matured considerably and is able to reflect the socio-cultural realities with precision. This study seeks to ascertain the emergence of the ‘new’ woman in the Marathi, Hindi, Punjabi and Indian-English short story by women writers of the last fifty years, roughly from the mid-1940s to the end of 1990s. The period studied shows remarkable changes not only in the society but also in woman’s approach to traditions, social norms and personal priorities. The later two decades of the twentieth century witnessed the rise of the ‘new’ woman who instead of being in conflict with the male, learns to realise her womanpower by rejecting choicelessness and accepting responsibility for the ‘self’. The march, however, is not smooth and the short story writers have judiciously balanced in their narratives the lived reality of woman’s life with their own convictions.

The women short story writers place their protagonists in the social milieu and portray them convincingly. The cultural pattern runs through the stories like a thread. Despite provincial differences, the representation of the modern Indian woman, with her typical social and psychological realities and problems, is authentic, recognisable and inclusive. The authors seem to agree that the travails of the Indian woman are not yet over and till the new awakening comes about fully, women have to share in the commonality of experience of violence, denigration and exploitation and break their silence to voice their particular experience. The comparative study has the potential to stimulate thinking on issues relevant to the Indian society as a composite whole.


Usha Bande, former Principal of Government Degree College, Arki, was earlier on the faculty of English Literature in Government College for Women, Shimla. She has to her credit numerous research papers and several books. Having a brilliant academic career, she is currently a Fellow at Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla.

Atma Ram, a senior academician, veteran educationist, administrator and writer, has taught English language and literature in colleges and English Department of Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla for over three decades. He has to his credit innumerable books and articles. With a life-long experience in education, Dr. Ram has held several important positions such as Education Adviser to Himachal Pradesh Government; Director of Education, Himachal Pradesh; Chairman, Examination Reforms Committee, Himachal Pradesh University; and Education Consultant, Himachal Pradesh Law Commission.

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