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Gender, sex and the city: Urdu rekhti poetry in India, 1780-1870

By: Vanita, Ruth.
Publisher: Hyderabad Orient BlackSwan 2012Description: xii, 296 p.ISBN: 9788125045533.Subject(s): Gender studies | Urdu Poetry - 18th century - History and criticism | Urdu Poetry - 19th century - History and criticismDDC classification: 891.43910099287 Summary: Gender, Sex and the City explores the cosmopolitan sensibilities of Urdu poetry written in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, especially in the city of Lucknow, which was the centre of a flourishing Indo-Persian culture. Through its ground-breaking analysis, it demonstrates how rekhti (a type of Urdu poetry whose distinguishing features are a female speaker and a focus on womens lives) and to some degree, non-mystical rekhta(mainstream Urdu poetry with a male speaker), for the first time in Urdu represent women (both of conventional families and courtesan households) as important shapers of urban culture, especially urban speech.Vanita analyses how rekhti becomes a catalyst for the transformation of the ghazal, first, by focusing it not on love alone but on the practices, spaces and rituals of everyday life; second, by bringing subordinated figures, such as women as well as servants centre-stage; and, third, by challenging the ghazals ideal of perfect love as framed by separation and suffering.
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Books Vikram Sarabhai Library
Slot 2377 (3 Floor, East Wing) Non-fiction 891.43910099287 V2G3 (Browse shelf) Available 177199

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Gender, Sex and the City explores the cosmopolitan sensibilities of Urdu poetry written in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, especially in the city of Lucknow, which was the centre of a flourishing Indo-Persian culture. Through its ground-breaking analysis, it demonstrates how rekhti (a type of Urdu poetry whose distinguishing features are a female speaker and a focus on womens lives) and to some degree, non-mystical rekhta(mainstream Urdu poetry with a male speaker), for the first time in Urdu represent women (both of conventional families and courtesan households) as important shapers of urban culture, especially urban speech.Vanita analyses how rekhti becomes a catalyst for the transformation of the ghazal, first, by focusing it not on love alone but on the practices, spaces and rituals of everyday life; second, by bringing subordinated figures, such as women as well as servants centre-stage; and, third, by challenging the ghazals ideal of perfect love as framed by separation and suffering.

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