Indian women’s agency through Indian women’s literature

Authored by: Sheetal Bharat

The Routledge Handbook of the History of Women’s Economic Thought

Print publication date:  September  2018
Online publication date:  September  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138852341
eBook ISBN: 9781315723570
Adobe ISBN:


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Patriarchy has been a dominant institution influencing the structure of society through recorded human history. In this chapter, I bring out the various ways in which Indian women have engaged with this institution from the fifth century bce till colonial times. I use Amartya Sen’s construct to identify the well- (or ill-) being of women as it is represented in their own writings, and go further to identify their exercises of agency in effecting welfare.

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