In December of 2012 in Delhi, India a woman was gang raped, tortured, and inflicted with such bodily violence that she died as a result of the injuries. The case caused massive public protests in Delhi and throughout the Indian subcontinent. These large scale public mobilizations lead to attempts to change national laws pertaining to sexual violence. One year after this case, The Supreme Court of India made the contentious decision to uphold Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. Section 377, instituted by British colonizers dates back to 1860 and criminalizes sexual activities deemed to be “unnatural,” namely queer sex and queer people. In December of 2013, massive protests also occurred throughout India regarding this decision. Both these cases received worldwide media attention and lead to public demonstrations and debates regarding sexual politics throughout Asia and globally. There was a resilient refrain heard at many of the political protests that took place: A¯za¯di¯. A¯za¯di is loosely translated into freedom. Drawing on interviews done in the Indian subcontinent, this book suggests that while colonial violence haunts postcolonial sexualities, anti-colonial resistance also remains, echoing in the streets like the chorus of an old song ~ A¯za¯di¯.
About the author
Tara Atluri has a PhD in Sociology and has taught classes in gender studies, visual cultures, politics, and media studies at scholarly institutions throughout the world. She has also held several research fellowships at universities throughout Europe and Asia. As an artist and performer, she has participated at exhibitions and events such as the Edgy Feminist Arts Festival in Montreal, Quebec, and the Feminist Arts Conference held in Toronto, Ontario. Her work has been published in scholarly anthologies and iacademic journals as well as on a number of blogs. Her most recent book, “z?d?: Sexual Politics and Postcolonial Worlds, was published in 2016. She is an active in #WhyLoiter? and other social movements in the Indian subcontinent, throughout the Global South and transnationally. She currently lives in Toronto