Call for Book Chapter Proposals - Women and Literature in India: A Critical Perspective (Working Title)

deadline for submissions: 
October 30, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
Dr. Animesh Roy and Srija Sanyal

REVISED - Call for Book Chapter Proposals

Editors: Dr. Animesh Roy, Assistant Professor, Department of English St. Xavier's College (Ranchi University), Ranchi, India

              Srija Sanyal, Research Scholar, Ronin Institute for Independent Research, NJ, USA


Women and Literature in India: A Critical Perspective (Working Title)

Women’s concerns, since are varied and defined by distinctive political, social, and historical issues, the representation of women in Indian literature therefore is dominated by various aspects of class, caste, race, and ethnicities that often contribute to the construction of individual identities. If modern understanding of women has generally been through a Western White lens, it has often ended up ignoring the post-colonial realities of women in India to such an extent that “the hegemonic practices in the west continue to construct the notion of the third world woman” (Chandra Talpade Mohanty).  

A particularly prolonged colonial rule resulted into an India being influenced by western modernity. Colonial modernity has played a pivotal role in imagining gender roles and redefining the notions of patriarchies. Traditional attitudes toward women and the exposure to western modernity set interesting modes of expression in India in the nineteenth century and onward. While women were getting educated, stepping out of the inner quarters on one hand, they were also subjected to ridicule for becoming the ‘new woman’ or ‘nabina’, often modelled on the white woman. In conjunction with this was the interpolation of issues of class and caste – issues that still continue to be much dominant in the socio-cultural matrix of India.

Such a situation found extensive expression in the literature of the time, where the paradox of women’s social existence, which, due to prevalent social reforms, was undergoing a critical metamorphosis. Women as an agency both suffered and glorified at the hands of social norms that were heavily influenced by the western ideals of a reformed and independent beings and the patriotic essence of visualizing the nation as the mother, thus urging the women to retain their ‘Indian-ness’ as the empowering tool. While the country was caught in the turbulence of gaining independence, the disruption of gender dynamics that were ushered in as a consequence also instigated a struggle of independence for gender from the parochialism of patriarchy. Literature, as a field dominated by men, often carving women characters through a phallocentric lens, thus emerged as a contested site for voicing the feminine. With more and more women ushering into education and holding the pen to foreword their tales, literature in India emerged as a space of unapologetic documentation pertaining to the evolving gender dynamics proliferating at the intersection of globalization and postcolonial practices.

The proposed volume intends to reflect upon such literary examples in various Indian languages that deal with women characters and concerns in the distinctive light of the prevalent paradox that the women of the nineteenth century and onward were subjected to. The possible topics include but not limited to:

  • Good versus bad women
  • Women and the freedom struggle
  • Women and the partition/post-partition literature
  • Feminist confessional poetry
  • Women as catalysts/harbingers of change
  • Modern woman – liberated, empowered, urban (?)
  • Biographies/autobiographies/life writings
  • Maternity/differently-abled women/octogenarian women in Indian literature
  • Gynocriticism in Indian literature
  • Evolution of female literary tradition in India
  • Women and the literary canon
  • Women and linguistic and cultural influence
  • Masculinity and womanhood
  • Women represented by male writers
  • Writings and women characters – by the women, for the women



  1. Mohanty, C. T. (1984). Under Western Eyes: Feminist Scholarship and Colonial Discourses. Vol. 12/13, Vol. 12, no. 3 - Vol. 13, no. 1, On Humanism and the University I: The Discourse of Humanism (Spring - Autumn, 1984), pp. 333-358
  2. Showalter, E. (1977). A Literature of Their Own. USA: Princeton University Press.


Original, scholarly, and unpublished research papers of around 5000 to 6000 words (including Endnotes and Works Cited sections) are invited from scholars from all over the world.

Kindly keep in mind the following points while submitting your paper:

1. Pages should be of A4 size.

2. The title of the paper should be in sentence case and centre alignment.

3. The main body of the essay should be in justified alignment.

4. Times New Roman font size 12 should be used.

5. Double spacing should be used between lines.

6. The MLA Handbook (Eighth Edition) should be followed for references and citations.

7. Please do not use Foot Notes. Use End Notes instead.

8. Each paper must be accompanied by:

i. A declaration that it is an original work and has not been published elsewhere or is under consideration for publication.

ii. An abstract of the paper in no more than 500 words, along with 5 keywords.

iii. A short biographical note about the contributor/s indicating name, institutional affiliation, brief career history, postal address, contact address (both personal and office) and e-mail id as a single attachment.

Mode of Submission:

Contributors are requested to send their finished papers with brief bio-notes as to both the editors: and with subject line “Submissions – Women and Literature in India”.

Please do note that the deadline for the finished paper is 30 October 2023.

Selection Procedure:

Final selection of the papers will be made by the editors. Details about the selection of papers will be informed through e-mail. Please note that only the notification of acceptance will be sent. The editors reserve the right to make editing changes in the papers selected for publication for the sake of conceptual clarity and formatting, if needed. Please indicate “Women and Literature in India” in the subject line for all e-mail correspondences.


We are in talks with a couple of international/national publishers who have shown keen interest in publishing this volume based on the initial standing of the contributors.