Gender Studies Programme/School of Human Studies AUD
Invites you to the talk Quest for Dalit Feminism: Who can theorise?
by Sunaina Arya (Co-Editor of Dalit Feminist Theory: A Reader)
Dalit feminist perspective gets subordinated by both a masculanist approach of philosophizing due to patriarchal nature of academia and ironically, by Indian feminist discourse. Interrogating the perspectival limits of mainstream Indian feminism, the present discussion attempts to offer a departure point in feminist articulation, which is based on the difference between the lives of mainstream and subaltern women. This difference calls forth our attention to the questions of authenticity and representation, investigating into ‘the politics of experience and the ethics of theorizing’. Theorising caste, race, class, gender or other emancipatory articulations cannot escape fundamental questions of epistemology and ontology. What social location or caste location or gender specificity entitles someone to claim authentic representation of one’s experience? In order to build a philosophy of feminism, theorising gender requires rethinking notions of patriarchy, feminism and ‘difference’ in the intellectual history.
Sunaina Arya is Editor of Dalit Feminist Theory: A Reader (with Aakash Singh Rathore) (Routledge, 2019), and a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Philosophy, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, completing a dissertation on feminist philosophy from a Dalit perspective. She earned her MPhil and MA also from the same centre. She received an Honourable Mention in Bluestone Rising Scholar Prize (2019) by J-CASTE, Brandeis University, Massachusetts, USA. She is part of Global Dalit Change Makers, an initiative of the India China Institute, The New School, New York City. She has been awarded the Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship and Senior Research Fellowship by the University Grants Commission for doctoral research. She has organised and presented research papers in several national and international conferences, seminars, and workshops as well as been a resource person for lectures, public talks and workshops. Her area of research includes social and political philosophy of Dr Ambedkar, philosophy and psychology, and the philosophy