Gender Equality

Living Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho, Anabela Marisa Azul, Luciana Brandli, Pinar Gökcin Özuyar, Tony Wall

Gender, Sexuality, and Caste-Based Occupations: A Case Study of the Bedia Community of North India

  • Risha BaruahEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-70060-1_10-1

Definition

“Gender” and “caste” when entwined together are often seen to produce a body of knowledge that floods one with notions of “purity” and “pollution” finding space in the much revered Hindu Shastras (with reference to the views emanating from Yajnavalkya, Satapatha Brahmana, Apastamba Dharmasutra to name a few). One would find the sexual purity of a woman and the factors that can bring impurity and pollution to a caste group in strong conjunction with one another. From a “menstruating virgin” to “widowhood,” the degree of successful regulation of a woman’s sexuality is seen as an indicator of the virility of the male members of the family and a mark of aggressive masculinity without which a man is considered a “na-mard,” a colloquial term in North India for being unmanly.

Caste may be defined “as a small and named group of persons characterized by endogamy, hereditary membership, and a specific style of life which sometimes includes the pursuit by tradition of a particular...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. Agrawal A (2008) Chaste wives and prostitute sisters. Routledge, New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  2. Ahmed A (2014) Think again: prostitution. Foreign Policy 204:74–78Google Scholar
  3. Berreman Gerald D (1967) Caste as Social Process. Southwest J Anthropol Journal of Anthropology 23(4)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Béteille A (1965) Caste, Class and Power: Changing Patterns of Stratification in Tanjore Village. California, University of California PressGoogle Scholar
  5. Brown L (2001) Sex work in Asia. World Health Organisation. Available via https://www.who.int/hiv/topics/vct/sw_toolkit/sex_work_asia.pdf. Accessed 16 Oct 2018
  6. Brunanski D (1995) Theories of personality: a feminist perspective. http://psybernetika.ca/issues/1995/summer/brunanski.htm. Accessed 18 Nov 2018
  7. Califia Pat (1994) Public sex: The culture of radical sex. Pittsburgh, Cleis PressGoogle Scholar
  8. Chapkis Wendy (1997) Live sex acts: Women performing erotic labour. London, CassellGoogle Scholar
  9. D’Cunha J (1992) Prostitution laws: ideological dimensions and enforcement practices. Econ Polit Wkly 27(17):WS34–WS44Google Scholar
  10. D’Cunha J (2011) Demand for legitimising of prostitution in the West: a critique. In: Kotiswaran P, Rajan R (eds) Issues in contemporary Indian feminism- sex work. Women Unlimited, New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  11. Enns CZ (1992) Toward integrating Feminist Psychotherapy and Feminist Philosophy. Professional Psychology: Research and Practices 23(6)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gordon D (1993) The unhappy relationship of feminism and postmodernism in anthropology. Anthropol Q 66(3):109–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Harcourt C, Donovan B (2005) The many faces of sex work. Sex Transm Infect.  https://doi.org/10.1136/sti.2004.012468CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mgbako C, Smith L (2011) Sex work and human rights in Africa. Fordham Int Law J 33(4):1178Google Scholar
  15. Miriam K (2005) Stopping the traffic in women: power, agency and abolition in feminist debates over sex-trafficking. J Soc Philos 36(1):1–17CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Mishra V (2013) Human trafficking: the stakeholder’s perspective. Sage, New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  17. Mohanty CT (2003) Feminism without borders- decolonizing theory practicing solidarity. Zubaan, New DelhiCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Nag M (2001) Anthropological perspectives on prostitution and AIDS in India. Econ Polit Wkly 36(42):4025–4030Google Scholar
  19. O’Connel DJ (2002) The rights and wrongs of prostitution. Fem Philos Love Work 17(2):84–98Google Scholar
  20. Peplau LA, Conrad E (1989) Beyond non-sexist research: The perils of feminist methods in psychology. Psychol Women Quart, vol 13Google Scholar
  21. Peterson-Iyer K (1998) Prostitution: a feminist ethical analysis. J Fem Stud Relig 14(2):19–44Google Scholar
  22. Pillai V (1982) Prostitution in India. Indian J Soc Work 43(3)Google Scholar
  23. Sahni R, Shankar VK, Apte H (eds) (2008) Prostitution and beyond: an analysis of sex work in India. Sage, New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  24. Schulze E, Canto SN, Mason P, Skalin M (2014) Sexual exploitation and prostitution and its impact on gender equality. European Parliament, Directorate General for internal policies, Policy Department, Citizens’ rights and constitutional affairsGoogle Scholar
  25. Sen A (1999) Development as freedom, 1st edn. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  26. Sonwani T (n.d.). https://www.ugc.ac.in
  27. Subedi M (2013) Some theoretical considerations on caste. Dhaulagiri J Sociol Anthropol 7:51–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Williams S, Masika R (2002) Trafficking and slavery. Gend Dev 10(1):38–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Social WorkUniversity of DelhiNew DelhiIndia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Melissa Haeffner
    • 1
  1. 1.Environmental Science and ManagementPortland State UniversityPortlandUSA