FACSAPP (Faculty Seminar and Paper Presentations)
A discussion on the paper titled
‘Women’s work and widowhood in a small-peasant economy of colonial Bengal’
by Prof. Deepita Chakravarty (SDS, AUD)
Prof. Praveena Kodoth (Centre For Development Studies, Trivandrum)
Zoom Meeting ID: 878 3006 9618
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The incidences of widowhood and underage marriage of girls are still much higher in West Bengal (WB) than in most other parts of India despite significant changes in the economic and political structures of the Indian states during at least the last two centuries. The incidence of widowhood was the highest in Bengal among the major colonial provinces. Historians argue that marriage practices of the higher castes gradually percolated downwards and many intermediary cultivating castes as well as lower castes started following the norms of child marriage and ban on widow remarriage as a means of attaining social respectability during the closing decades of the nineteenth and the early years of the twentieth century. This paper tries to find out whether the highest incidence of widowhood in colonial Bengal could also have some relation with the very nature of women’s labour force participation which in turn was determined largely by the nature of the agrarian economy.
An economist by training Professor Kodoth works in the area of gender and contemporary social history of India and Kerala. She was the recipient of the prestigious Sir Ratan Tata post doc fellowship at the London School of Economics in 2006. She has published extensively in many reputed journals.
FACSAPP attempts to bring to public view a discussion around AUD Faculty publications, project outputs and working papers. It is an effort directed towards making sense of research within the University space.