This book investigates the contemporary situation of women in India by focusing on four broad domains: the cultural, the social, the political and the economic. The writers argue that despite apparently positive indicators of progress, particularly in education and paid employment, little has changed in the position of women.
Steadily falling sex ratios, they suggest show a growing - and in some parts of India an institutionalized - bias against the female child. They trace the complex way in which this is connected with the nature of development processes, and assert that in recent years, simultaneously with economic development, there seems to have been a strengthening of male biases, patriarchal norms and values across all castes and classes in India.
Can these two processes be seen as entirely separate, they ask, or are they organically linked? Together, these essays provide a fresh perspective on the situation of women‘s lives in India and bring out interesting contrasts and comparisons between the North and the South.