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Exploitation of Subaltern Women – An Analysis of Mahaswetha Devi’s Short Story, Shanichari


Affiliations
1 Nirmala College for Women, Bharatiar University, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India
 

The present paper is about the exploitation of subaltern women physically, sexually, socially and economically by the mainstream society. This is exposed through the story, Shanichari, written by Mahaswetha Devi. Mahashweta Devi, the noted writer-activist of Bengal, uses her pen to raise awareness against social injustice, discrimination and poverty, especially against tribal and indigenous people in India. Shanichari, one of the short stories in the Outcast is an example of eclipsed system of wrenching women within patriarchy, caste, impoverishment, and local politics; these strictures exploiting a female body in terms of sexuality and production. The protagonist Shanichari in the story is represented as ‘the other’ in the discourse of being tribal, woman and peasant, a subject of non-hegemonic group. Like Shanichari, most of the writings of Mahasweta Devi bring to the fore the complexities of caste, tribe, class and gender that exist in India today.


Keywords

Subaltern, Exploitation, Tribal Women, Complexities, Class and Gender, Mainstream Society.
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  • Exploitation of Subaltern Women – An Analysis of Mahaswetha Devi’s Short Story, Shanichari

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Authors

P. M. Shifa
Nirmala College for Women, Bharatiar University, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India

Abstract


The present paper is about the exploitation of subaltern women physically, sexually, socially and economically by the mainstream society. This is exposed through the story, Shanichari, written by Mahaswetha Devi. Mahashweta Devi, the noted writer-activist of Bengal, uses her pen to raise awareness against social injustice, discrimination and poverty, especially against tribal and indigenous people in India. Shanichari, one of the short stories in the Outcast is an example of eclipsed system of wrenching women within patriarchy, caste, impoverishment, and local politics; these strictures exploiting a female body in terms of sexuality and production. The protagonist Shanichari in the story is represented as ‘the other’ in the discourse of being tribal, woman and peasant, a subject of non-hegemonic group. Like Shanichari, most of the writings of Mahasweta Devi bring to the fore the complexities of caste, tribe, class and gender that exist in India today.


Keywords


Subaltern, Exploitation, Tribal Women, Complexities, Class and Gender, Mainstream Society.