Reproductive practices serve as an important site to examine the processes by which the female body is manipulated to service patriarchal power. This article situates the violent tragedy of female infanticide in south India within the everyday struggles of women in two rural communities. Only the mother who can bear sons is socially validated in many communities. Based on ethnographic material collected in two rural areas in south India, the research shows how gender ideologies position mothers in the dual role of victim and murderer. The narratives of women reveal the extent to which violence against women is routinized and accepted. The death of newborn girls represents the systemic oppression that surrounds women's lives in these regions of south India.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Gender Studies
- Sociology and Political Science