The Enigma of the Kerala Woman: A Failed Promise of Literacy consists of multi-disciplinary research carried out on various aspects of gender relations in Kerala by scholars from a range of social science disciplines under The Gender Network, a regional network of researchers investigating the phenomenon of gender under varied social and economic settings. The introductory chapter provides an overarching framework for the individual studies. Breaking new ground in analytical and methodological dimensions of Women’s Studies, the papers collectively seek to provide an answer to the ‘enigma’ of the Kerala woman.
The book comes alive through two separate sections. The first one is devoted to case studies of women from the area of research and the second to photographs of Kerala women in various social settings with detailed anthropological captions. The two sections complement each other in supporting the main theme of the book. The book has a rich body of data which provides comparative figures relating to development indices for Kerala in relation to some other states as well as India as a whole.
Swapna Mukhopadhyay is former Professor of Economics at the Institute of Economic Growth and former Director at the Institute of Social Studies Trust, New Delhi. She is currently involved as an advisor in some international development projects and occasionally teaches courses in Economics at various universities in the city. She also plays the violin and teaches Western classical music at the Delhi School of Music.