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Cultivating Minds-19th Century Gujarati Women s Journals

19th Century Gujarati Women's Journals Sonal Shukla Social reformers and cultural revivalists in the 19th century and nationalists in the early decades of this century published journals for women in Gujarati with a view to 'educating' them and preparing them for the roles they expected women to play in their scheme of things. This article examines and analyses the content and style of StreeBodh, a Gujarati women's magazine which began in the 1850s and closed down sometime in the 1950s, in the first 50 years of its existence THERE is today virtually no women's magazine in Gujarati in the popular sense except a weekly tabloid called Stree brought out by Sandesh. an Ahmedabadbased daily and another called Shree from its rival paper Gujarat Samachar. Femina, a Times of India publication and Grihshobha, a Hindi journal for women have both begun to publish their Gujarati editions in the last two years. Both these are glossies and the bulk of their content is translated from the original magazines with Femina reserving a small percentage for original Gujarati writing to give the journal a regional flavour. Sudha, a women's magazine introduced by Janma- hhoomi group of papers from Bombay in the 70s aimed to provide more intellectual and up-to-date fare to its readers but commercially it was unsuccessful. Its publication was discontinued from 1981. Sudha had tried to provide good literary content, popular fare and a debate on contemporary issues related to women. The well known writer Dhiruben Patel who has, among other things, written dialogues and lyrics of the film Bhavni Bhavai. was its founder editor while sociologist Neera Desai was among its later editors.

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