The Radical Responses of Pandita Ramabai: Challenging the Spirit of her Time through her Writings (Published)
Pandita Ramabai (1858-1922) wrote extensively from her different positions as a social reformer, an activist, a traveler, a deeply spiritual person, as an institution builder and her compulsions led her to pen thoughts. She wrote about the nature and experience of oppressive patriarchal practices, particularly in the context of widowhood, and other distresses in a woman’s life. She was a participant observer who wrote about the women’s question with a piercing gaze. In her books Stri Dharma Niti (1882) and The High Caste Hindu Women (1888), she depicted the darkest side of the life of the Hindu widows most of them mere child in the high caste family and the treatment they receive in the family as well as in the society. The writings of Pandita Ramabai can be classified into two broad arenas: in this category we can put her writing pertaining to her understanding of the questions and issues related to women, and in the second one, her travel writings can be kept which Uma Chakravarti has called ‘journeys of the self’.