Indian Sex Life

By Durba Mitra,

Book cover of Indian Sex Life: Sexuality and the Colonial Origins of Modern Social Thought

Book description

How British authorities and Indian intellectuals developed ideas about deviant female sexuality to control and organize modern society in India

During the colonial period in India, European scholars, British officials, and elite Indian intellectuals-philologists, administrators, doctors, ethnologists, sociologists, and social critics-deployed ideas about sexuality to understand modern Indian society. In…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Indian Sex Life as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Mitra’s book centers on the colonial period in India, when European scholars, British officials, and Indian intellectuals, focused on sexuality, specifically the figure of the prostitute, in order to study and to understand the place of women in modern Indian society.

The specter of deviant female sexuality structured fiction and intellectual thought on topics ranging from caste domination to trafficking, to widowhood and inheritance, to abortion and infanticide.

Indian Sex Life compellingly illustrates the importance of female deviance in the imagination of scholars and writers, and how they used their ideas about women’s sexuality to solidify rigid gender ideals—and to…

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