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Women And Revolution: The Peoples War In Nepal Add in library

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From 1996-2006, civil war based on a Maoist uprising served to rupture the existing social order and recreate the political landscape in Nepal. This week we examine a conflict driven by ideology rather than religion, ethnicity or nationalism. We examine the participation of women in the Maoist revolution, the peace process and in the new social and political order following the end of the civil war in 2006. The participation of women in the conflict opens new questions such as can women truly be equal to men in militarized societies? what happens to power relations when the existing social and political order is upturned - do marginalized identities fare better or worse? and finally, what kind of justice can we envisage for a society that has experienced political revolution?


Manchanda R, 'Maoist Insurgency In Nepal: Radicalizing Gendered Narratives' (2004) 16 Cultural Dynamics

This article by Rita Manchanda explores the changes with regard to gender inequalities that have arisen as a result of the political challenges in the Maoist Revolution taking place in the country of Nepal. The article further explores the existing tension due to the presence of women folk in the Maoist Movement and the dominant male leaders who are too hesitant to discover the new intricacies of gender relations.

Manchanda puts an effort to recognize how the revolutionary struggles witness the increasing mobilization of women in the armed forces and she also questions on how the translation may be conducted to incorporate a more gender specific program agenda.[1]

The article provides data on the percentage of women in the in the heartland of the Maoists. It states that almost 30% of the Maoists are women.[2] Manchanda further argues on the vision of the Maoists in the revolutionary country of Nepal which opens opportunities for expressing the possible transformation in politics without any inconsistencies.

Manchanda very elaborately examines the condition of women who are compelled to join the Maoists. Women guerilla happens to be extremely primary in the projection of this movement. The author further reflects the power of women in the Maoist movement with regard to the leverage facilities and the amount of space available to them.[3]


The women who participated in the propaganda were exploited and they even further exploited the general people by spinning folklores about the well known women guerilla leaders such as Kamla Bhatta and Shanti Shrestha. They were depicted as self sacrificing and heroic in their deeds. The article reflects on the actual reason for the women folks in joining the Maoists movements. Thousands of women were trafficked, many were diagnosed with anemia and others were suffering from illiteracy, poverty, miscarriages and other unhygienic conditions.

Even though women pay a very important in the agricultural industry in the country they are generally neglected in the feudal system. They do not receive any property from their parents even though it is the women who run the household. Further in case the men marry other women the previous wives have to leave the households. Hence it is evident that the women face a lot of injustice in the country that compels them to join the revolutionary armies.

Manchanda also explores the issue of sexuality in the article and its relevance in the country. Generally it is the young girls who participate in the armies and who are widely discriminated.[4]

 This article primarily deals with the impact of the Maoist movement on the country and on the women folk in the country. It states how this impact is observed from the existing proposals of reforms which have been put forward by the government when the cease fire negotiations were taking place in 2003. The article has further explored the various questions with regard to the development of freedom, the accountability regarding the human rights abuse in the country and its relative impact on gender relations.



Manchanda R, 'Maoist Insurgency In Nepal: Radicalizing Gendered Narratives' (2004) 16 Cultural Dynamics

Manchanda, Maoist Insurgency, 237

Manchanda, Maoist Insurgency, 238

Manchanda, Maoist Insurgency, 241

Manchanda, Maoist Insurgency, 250

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