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Feminist Contributions to Sociology of Law: A Review

This paper demonstrates the extent and multiple forms of feminist engagement with the spheres of law, which has yet to be matched in any other field. Yet there is little acknowledgement of the foundational challenges that have been offered over a long history, especially in newly emerging sub-disciplines such as the sociology of law, the curricula of new law schools and mainstream legal publishing. Feminists have especially challenged legal centralism, offering instead plural conceptions of the working out of law in society.

REVIEW OF WOMEN’S STUDIESEconomic & Political Weekly EPW october 25, 200879Feminist Contributions to Sociology of Law: A ReviewPratiksha BaxiThis paper demonstrates the extent and multiple forms of feminist engagement with the spheres of law, which has yet to be matched in any other field. Yet there is little acknowledgement of the foundational challenges that have been offered over a long history, especially in newly emerging sub-disciplines such as the sociology of law, the curricula of new law schools and mainstream legal publishing. Feminists have especially challenged legal centralism, offering instead plural conceptions of the working out of law in society.I am grateful to Mary John for urging me to publish this paper, which is based on a paper submission entitled, ‘Re-viewing Feminist Pictures of Law’, for the panel on Knowledge Production and Critique of Disciplines at the IAWS Conference at Lucknow, February 7-10, 2008. I am immensely grateful to Uma for sharing her ideas and time so generously. To Upen and Anuj, many thanks for their feedback, especially on legal pluralism.Pratiksha Baxi (pratiksha.baxi@gmail.com) is with the Centre for the Study of Law and Governance at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.Sociology of law, subsumed under sociology of professions or political sociology, in the discipline of sociology has been rediscovered in recent years. One can safely say that although there is now a move to categorise existing ethnographies under the sign of socio-legal studies and an attempt to institu-tionalise socio-legal studies, it is not as if socio-legal research has not found a place in India since the writings of Bernard Cohn (1965) and M N Srinivas (1998). The two Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) reviews of sociology of law by Veena Das (1974), and Upendra Baxi (1986) provide us an exhaustive picture of the field till the 1980s. Recently this project of review-ing research in the field has been undertaken by J S Gandhi for theICSSR. While we await the publication of the report, I wish to suggest that feminist/gender studies is in fact one of the pro-ductive contexts that has promoted sociological research on law since the 1980s.1 1 IntroductionThe move to institutionalise sociology of law may be contextual-ised at least in six different ways. First, as an outcome of the emergent conversations with other social science disciplines which constitute law as a distinct object of enquiry. Second, the shift in public discourse such that courts of law become sites of intense public debate on law and society (for example, the recent debates on death penalty, terror, hostile witness and necrophilia). Third, the impact of global discourses on access to justice and al-ternate dispute resolution, which create avenues for funding research on legal processes and dispute resolution. Fourth, the emergence of gender studies which privileges and challenges state law as a site of social change. Fifth, legal events such as the mass torts in Bhopal or the aftermath of mass scale violence in Delhi (1984) the violence in Bombay and Surat (1992) or Gujarat (2002), which engender issues of testimony, reconciliation and rehabilitation. Sixth, the transnational concern with emergency or exception, whereby the implementation or suspension of state law becomes central as an autonomous object of enquiry, which is not reducible simply to the politics of law signalling the way women’s bodies have become a site for doing competitive liberal politics in India today. I proffer that the scholarship in the field of sociology of law has been enriched by the emergence of gender studies since it has invigorated the exploration of how law is embedded in social processes and challenged mainstream (read: malestream) pic-tures of “law” [Mody 2002; Rao 1999; Vatuk 2001; Moore 1994; Das1996;John and Nair 1998; Kannabiran 2005; Uberoi 1996]. The
REVIEW OF WOMEN’S STUDIESoctober 25, 2008 EPW Economic & Political Weekly80concernsof feminist scholarship and feminist jurisprudence haveonlyrecently found resonance in sociological and anthro-pological writings on sexuality, violence and law in India [Basu 2006; Das 1996; Kannabiran and Kannabiran 2002; John and Nair 1998; Mody 2002; Uberoi 1996; Vatuk 2001]. Elsewhere scholars havebrought the concerns of feminist scholarship to legal anthro-pology or sociology of law [Abu-Lughod 1990; Griffiths 2002; Merry 1994; Smart 1989], thereby, shifting the focus on law-as-rule to law-as-process, written law to spoken law and law as a site where meaning is produced, interpreted and conveyed in a field of force. These works have looked at what it means for women to be subjects of personal law, customary law, family law and state law as overlapping fields of subjection [Abu Lughod 1990]. Literature on Feminist PublishingWhile some of these works have critiqued legal discourse by sub-jecting appellate judgments to textual analyses, others have moved towards using sociological methods to detail the processes of law. Yet even so one of the only texts that organises existing literature under the rubric of sociology of law in recent years does not fully acknowledge the contributions of feminist engagements with the law. Indra Deva’s edited volume on sociology of law is indicative of the earlier emphasis within law and society scholar-ship wherein S P Sathe’s essay marks an illustrious exception to mainstream scholarship. However, the contributions of feminist studies to socio-legal research in India have not found serious reflection in law and society scholarship in south Asia, not just in India but elsewhere as well. The stabilisation of law and society in south Asia as a sub-discipline has of course pursued different histories and contexts of institutionalisation and canonisation. Here too, it will not be inaccurate to say that feminist legal ethnography often is added on, (if at all) rather than seen as pro-viding a foundational challenge to the very conceptualisation of the field of law and society. It is therefore important to situate our reading of emergent disciplines within new forms of marginali-sation of feminist work. Techniques of censorship and repression have also been annexed by malestream legal publishers who have continued to produce masculinist genealogies of the law. The emergence of disciplines that challenge such techniques of censorship and re-pression must trace the work of feminist publishers like Urvashi Butalia and Ritu Menon, new publishers such as Stree or Yoda, and the introduction of Gender Series in almost every press in India. We owe to Kali for Women the gift of Recasting Women (1989), a foundational text for every women’s studies course in India. We are able to deconstruct masculinist genealogies of the law due to the efforts of feminists who approached publishing as a form of politics which challenges and destabilises the misogy-nist systemisation of knowledge.2 For instance, we are able to read constitutional law in the aftermath of the Partition through the writings of Urvashi Butalia (1999), as well as Kamla Bhasin and Ritu Menon (2000) to show how mainstream constitutional lawyers elide the fact that abducted women were denied the right to habeas corpus at the time of independence. In other words, feminist publishing created the conditions necessary for challenges to the canonical schools of legal thought that inhabitthe curricula of most law schools. Their overall impact on legal and social science pedagogies remains an important, yet different question. 2 Sociological Pedagogy in the Law SchoolsWhile sociology has been introduced in 10+2+5 law schools, sociology, like other social sciences, mostly remains a supple-ment to law courses. The course outline in Amity Law School, for example, is an illustration of how sociology is taught as a supple-ment to black letter law courses, which may not look at how law impinges life while the courses offered at the National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR), Hyderabad, explores the use of sociological approaches to law in different domains oflawand life. Kalpana Kannabiran (2005), for instance, has interrogated how legal education must seriously look at how law is embedded in the society. Kannabiran critiques the way the teaching of sociology is annexed to the agenda of legal education by integrating an interdisciplinary approach to law – an approach which is especially inspired by feminism in her pedagogy [Kannabiran 2005]. However, the resistance to the project of interdisciplinarity and the marginalisation of feminists within law schools by black letter law pedagogy remains a fact. Feminist research, methodology and frameworks animate dif-ferent kinds of interventions. While reflexivity and politics of writing become central concerns to the way in which one does ethnography, the engagement with the academia is not an inert relationship. It is not surprising to find that feminists have taken up a range of issues that challenge the foundational sexism of higher education as part of the everyday challenge of life as academics. It becomes important therefore to recount the shifts in peda-gogy within law schools since the 1970s. Each engagement with contemporary women’s studies/movements begins with remem-bering the effects of the Status of Women Commission Report, which brought “status of women” as a discursive and material category of analysis in social science research. This was the con-text that saw the growth of studies on locating how law could be harnessed as medium for social change. In socio-legal studies of the 1960s to 1980s, we find a proliferation of work on law and social change or law and development. The 1980s was a remarkable period which saw four law professors in Delhi University, Upendra Baxi, Lotika Sarkar, Vasudha Dhagamwar and Raghunath Kelkar (1979) craft protest against the acquittal of the policemen who raped a young tribal girl, Mathura by writing an “open letter” to the Supreme Court. The open letter was constituted as a “scandal” at the time. The scandal of the open letter, which pushed the Supreme Court in a legitimation crisis, wherein lawyers and politicians alike critiqued the autonomous women’s groups for protesting outside the gates of the Supreme Court, anticipated the beginnings of judicial activism. It was only subsequently that the Supreme Court liberalised its position on locus standi to allow any other person than the two parties to file a writ petition on issues of public interest. This was the period when judicial activism was invented; professors and students at the Delhi University’s law faculty filed social action litigations that aimed at improving conditions of women living in state-run custodial institutions and research projects that took seriously the
REVIEW OF WOMEN’S STUDIESEconomic & Political Weekly EPW october 25, 200881categories of gender, class and caste came to be formulated within the law schools.3 Pedagogic ShiftsWomen studies impacted legal scholars such as B Sivaramayya (1999) who wrote a brilliant tract on matrimonial law and property rights for women, and S P Sathe (1993) worked on gender and constitutional law through an analysis of equality law cases. Lotika Sarkar and B Sivaramayya (1994) subsequently published a collection of essays on women and law. The “minor” jurispru-dence inaugurated by feminist scholars in law schools led to important pedagogic shifts. Ved Kumari, for instance, narrates how the teaching of rape law in a law school was discouraged on grounds of provoking shameful and indecent imaginations in students. Engendering Law (1999), co-edited by Archana Parashar and Amita Dhanda, remains a testimony to the impact of Lotika Sarkar’s influence on her students and the inauguration of research within law schools on gender and law. Yet Lotika Sarkar’s engagement with women’s studies and her position as a law professor at the University of Delhi is a complex story that yet re-mains to be narrated to detail the repudiation of sexism in law schools and legal education.4 This recounting is not ritualistic in the sense of memorialising specific academics, or events. I think it is necessary to briefly re-count people, campaigns, institutions and events to challenge modes of forgetting that get institutionalised, for instance, with the recent emergence of “branded” law schools which have now re-discovered the project of interdisciplinarity and make a plea for including law within the larger ambit of the social sciences. There is a need to acknowledge the work that pre-existed the na-tional law schools as well as to document how the creation of “women and law” as a separate domain of pedagogy and research was domesticated. We need to document how the law schools “adjusted” to women’s studies by undercutting its radical politics and domes-ticating its interdisciplinary challenge to the entire cannon of legal education to a “perspective” rather than recognising its epistemic challenge. Thereby effecting the separation between the field “women and law” from feminist politics or feminist jurisprudence. The struggles of feminist academics, marginalised, (and even stigmatised) by being characterised as “soft” scholars must find documentation. Ironically, with the increasing “projectisation” of research in universities, gender has become an attractive resource for many academics, yet these academics also are able to pledge a distance from feminist politics. So much so that it is perfectly normal for women academics to ask: what is the relationship between gender justice and feminism? Gender SensitisationToday, the creation of women and law centres in law schools cater to the crafting of women and law courses, gender sensitisation programmes for judges and judicial training. While there are many genres of training, yet we need to understand how training can de-politicise and exhaust our energies by treating the relation-ship between language and subjectivity rather mechanically. It is not untrue that gender mainstreaming and training remain a way to make gender and law palatable to law schools.5 However, the transmission of knowledge is not always top down in university spaces. The official syllabi and institutional calendar of a university is often subverted by the political imagi-nations, desires and energies of student communities. In an interesting account of the National Law School in Bangalore, Mario D’ Penha and Tarun (2005) describe the sub-culture of politics around queer sexuality that captures the course and the classroom. We are told that languages of constitutionalism and rights based discourse that are taught in the law school actually enabled queer rights to find space for discussion and assertion. In 1997, a conference on gay rights was an important discursive break, which enabled more students to come out and endeavour to create safer spaces in Bangalore.Thereafter, the law schools saw a number of research projects on sexuality; class discussions that marked the emergence of queer jurisprudence, especially through radical reading of the Hart and Devlin debate and the “Sexuality in Law School” project – a survey of attitudes on sexuality. This movement was em-braced by the student run Gender Study Circle. The popularity of Michael Kirby, an eminent Australian high court judge, who “made it a point to come out before students and faculty mem-bers, ruffling a few feathers of course but inspiring many others” subverted official scripts of censorship [ibid 2005: 210]. The faculty appear to have tolerated these efforts rather than actively support the initiatives. While it is often hard to sustain such “moments” of student activism in university spaces, it is important to note the critique that is offered in spite of the institutional arrangements that aim to produce able corporate lawyers.3 Feminist Pictures of LawIn recent years feminist understandings of law, be this through placing feminist theory within jurisprudence, through substan-tive areas of law or through specific campaigns authored by the women’s movements in India, has challenged the idea of legal centralism.6 This challenge has been offered in different ways. First, the idea that state law itself is plural. Second, non-state law offers a challenging context to understand multiple forms and tech-niques of gendered subjection. Third, not only does state law inter-sect with non-state law, but state law also mimes non-statelaw. The attempt herein to bring diverse areas, forms and techniques of legality and illegality, (or state law and non-state law), is to take seriously how feminist writings/women’s studies/women’s movement(s)7 have recognised multiple spheres of legal subjec-tion, and thereby actually injected newness in the processes of producing knowledge about law and society in India. First, feminists have looked at plurality in terms of different regimes of law and custom that create legal subjectivity, for ex-ample the impressive literature on personal law regimes. Flavia Agnes (1999) locates plural regimes of personal law within the culture of courtrooms which use litigations, such as in the infamous triple talaq judgment by the Allahabad High Court, as resource for Hindutva politics. Second, feminists have looked at the plurality of legal institu-tions or forms such as locating the place of gender in routine courts,
REVIEW OF WOMEN’S STUDIESoctober 25, 2008 EPW Economic & Political Weekly82and family courts. For example, Sylvia Vatuk (2001) discusses how women bear the burden of compromise through her research on the Muslim personal law in family courts in Chennai. Third, feminists have looked at the plurality of expert know-ledge – especially in the field of medical jurisprudence and in practices of policing. For example, Flavia Agnes (2005) reflects on medical jurisprudence in the realm of criminal law, also Arvind Narain and Vinay Chandran (2005) critique the medicali-sation of queer subjects through categories of insanity or pathology.Fourth, feminists have paid attention to judicial language, although primarily through gender sensitisation programmes of legal experts, especially judges. Fifth, feminists have mobilised new measures of regulation through interpretations of constitutional law, in lieu of domestic legislation. Padmini Swaminathan’s (2005) essay on sexual har-assment signals the fragilities of focusing on a singular notion of the workplace. Each of these deploys the notion of plurality to challenge the idea of a coherent, homogeneous and singular technique of har-nessing legal authority. Yet plurality may often signal different and perhaps even contradictory meanings for the projects of emancipation or justice. 4 On Plurality of State LawThe idea that state law is plural has been explored by looking at the different forms of legalities and illegalities that are constitu-tive of state law simultaneously. Anupama Rao’s (2004) analysis of torture illustrates how state law constitutes itself through a plurality of illegalities which remains a public secret. Vrinda Grover (2000) narrates the way the police used techniques of for-gery to blur or falsify the facts of a complaint in the aftermath of 1984, such as, inventing the omnibus first information report. Priyadarshini Thangarajah and Ponni Arasu (2008) show how adult lesbian women are not allowed to live with each other through the illegal use of state law. Hence, the fact that state law is plural is not only a listing of how law manifests itself at differ-ent sites, its heterogeneity or the lack of consistency within itself. Rather, feminist scholars detail the plurality of illegalities that sit beside legalities to constitute state law. State law is also plural to the extent it ceases to resemble itself in specific contexts. Take for example, the feminist critique of judges directing a rape survivor to marry the rapist. No law book suggests that it is legally valid to direct a rape victim to marry the rapist. Yet the judges seem to be inspired by other forms of dispute resolution such as those which rest with the figure of the patriarchal father in the family or with caste panchayats wherein it is not incommensurate to suggest that a raped woman be married to the man who raped her. Even state law, feminists seem to argue, cannot be understood without situating its formations within a “thick” understanding of legal pluralisms.Let us take another ex-ample from Prem Chowdhry’s (2007) work, who details how love is criminalised: police and lawyers, alike, frame marriages of choice which militate against familial, caste and/or community norms as crimes of honour. Today when we see the tensions between the lower judiciary which strains to recover an adult daughter who chooses her partner and the higher judiciary which asserts a criterion of legality by reasserting the rights of an adult woman to choose her partner, we note the plural and contesting claims to sovereignty [Baxi 2006]. Does this point towards different modalities through which law is embedded in the social as we traverse judicial hierarchy? Must we continue to think of appellate courts as normative and more distant from the “local”, therefore more “textual” or “prescriptive” than lower courts? Or do trial and appellate courts, demand more rigorous analyses of specific forms of plural practices by which the law is annexed to the social?CompromisesThis brings me to the issue of compromise. If we look at the prac-tice of law in trial courts we find that rape cases are routinely compromised [Baxi 2005]. Unlike other forms of out of court settlements described as mechanisms of alternate dispute resolu-tion, plea-bargaining or mediation in courts of law, compromise is not legal in most criminal cases such as rape and murder, in India. This is a complex arena of negotiations, wherein the cate-gory of rape loses its transparency since the police encourage families to use the laws on rape and abduction in cases of marriages of choice or undesirable sexual relationships, espe-cially between unmarried couples. In other instances of child sexual abuse or rape of adult women, the case may be compro-mised in the court on the grounds of delay, and to contain stigma which a trial would ensure ruining the chances of marriage in the future. Such cases leave a trace in a few appellate judgments through the category of the hostile witness. We do not find appel-late reflections on the processes of compromise since these are illegal and thereby, presumed not to exist. However, if we take the processes of compromise or out of court settlements seriously, we are able to show how courts of law are spaces for negotiating both the legal and illegal simultaneously.8 Forged Contracts: The emphasis on everyday processes of the law providing accounts of subjection and resistance is important since it allows us to rethink the categories that are normalised by the doctrinal picture of law. This brings us to the work on con-tracts that are forged in the shadow of the law. Even though such contracts are not legally binding, they have been treated by people as if these were binding contracts and thereby, producing specific states of subjection. Vasudha Dhagamwar (1992) provides one such illustration whereby modern day slavery of women was regulated by ‘dhareecha’ contracts. Veena Das (1990)has docu-mented divorce agreements between the widows of 1984 and their dead husbands. Such agreements signed on stamped paper were worked out through a caste panchayat when the women were not willing to follow leviratic marriage practices by marry-ing the dead husband’s brother or another kin. The agreements divided the compensation that the widows received between the dead husband’s family and the widow. Even though such agree-ments do not have legal validity these become authoritative by absorbing the form of state law. Friendship Agreements:A far more complicated story emerges with ‘maitri karar’, a friendship agreement, which had wide
REVIEW OF WOMEN’S STUDIESoctober 25, 2008 EPW Economic & Political Weekly84Grover’s argument is critical since it allows us to question why we continue to describe the criminal legal system as just, while we explore the ambivalent relationship between the criminal trial and expectations of justice. Consider the categories used by the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP’s) Access to Jus-tice Project, which describes non-state law as non-state justice system, even while reckoning the human rights violations of women by non-state laws such as caste panchayats. Sociologists and law reformers continue to use the category alternate dispute resolution, even though resolution may entail immense social suf-fering for women under adjudication. The stubborn persistence of older categories that animated a different generation law and so-ciety scholarship has found challenge in feminist thought as signs which organise our scholarship to normalise social suffering.6 ConcludingCommentsIn recent years we have seen increasing recognition of the fact that disputes need to be resolved at sites other than courts of law. Hence, there have been some initiatives such as the ones taken by the Partners for Law in Development (PLD) in Delhi to define community-based dispute resolution. Yet the definitions of community are affiliative, to borrow Veena Das’s (1990) expression, forged through relationships between women. Most of us know about the setting up of ‘nari adalats’ – courts run by women, usually in the compound of a local court, without any legal experts to resolve a range of violations including domestic violence [Merry 2006].13 This is just one example of how critical engagement with the law in the realm of the practical has moved away from limiting its field of action to categories of reform in the sphere of legislation. More foundationally at stake is the very imagination of doing legal ethnography which not only demonstrates how law is embed-ded in the social or how law can be re-imagined; but it is also a route to reconfigure notions of testimony, violence and suffer-ing in everyday life. We need further reflection on whether feminist ethnography of the law has de-centred older ways of constituting law as an object of study in ways that have yet to be fully recognised. Notes 1 The bibliography, although not exhaustive, ges-tures towards the impact of gender studies on law and society scholarship. 2 I am grateful to Uma Chakravarti for drawing my attention to this point. 3 Sheela Barse’s intervention in courts in Mumbai and Seema Sakhare’s initiative to provide legal redress and counsel to women in Nagpur stand out as examples of how women lawyers reached out to make legal redress possible to survivors of violence. 4 Upendra Baxi and Lotika Sarkar’s engagement with the Agra Home Case for instance narrates how the pedagogy of legal education was linked to feminist politics. Indeed, the Agra Home Case remains one of the few instances of sustained legal challenges to the way women are subjected to the structural violence of state run institu-tions. S P Sathe’s account of judicial activism shows us that the Supreme Court becomes the site where state excesses found constitutional challenge routinely, and Saheli’s intervention in a case of custodial violence was one very important precedent. 5 I am grateful to Kamala Sankaran for this insight. 6 Describing legal centralism, Griffiths says that it is understood as “authority … centralised in the form of the state, represented through the government, the most visible form of which is the legislature. … Law was conceived as gaining its authority from the state, and, as part of the process of government became authoritative. This authority, as its most basic level, was upheld through the power to impose or enforce sanc-tions. While associated with government, law was at the same time able to develop relative au-tonomy both from the state and from society through the existence of its own institutions, which dealt exclusively with legal matters…In this way law became established as a self-validat-ing system, a system whose validity, authority and legitimacy rely no longer on external source such as morality or religion, but rather on internal sources which are self-referential for its regula-tion and perpetuation” (2002: 292-93). 7 While recognising the distinctions between the histories of feminist writings, the institutionalisa-tion of women’s studies and the imperatives of women’s movements, I treat these intertwined histories as a distinctive discursive context that has shaped the pedagogic, political and epistemo-logical engagements with socio-legal issues in India. I do not cover all areas of law or life in this paper. Nor do I compile a comprehensive review of the field. I gesture towards how the concept of law is complicated in feminist analyses by indicat-ing how feminists have explored the plurality of state law. 8 The figure of the hostile witness shows us how the court accepts some forms of illegality and rejects other forms of illegality that constitutes state law. The term culture of compromise emphasises how a criminal trial becomes a site for the contestation over the monopoly of an out of court settlement between the accused, the complainant and the prosecuting agencies. 9 I am grateful to Upendra Baxi for drawing my at-tention to ‘maitri karar’.10 In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of Section 22-A of the Registration Act, 1908 (Act XVI of 1908), in its application to the State ofMaharashtra the Government of Maharashtra hereby declares that the registration of a docu-ment purporting, or operating to effect a con-tract popularly known as “Companionship Contract” or “Maitri Karar” is opposed to public policy(GNR& FD RGN-1081/CR-410/81-M1 dated June 8, 1983).11 I am grateful to Madhu Mehra and Sree Rekha for sharing some of the findings of the research con-ducted under the aegis of the Partners for Law in Development. 12 In the aftermath of Gujarat 2002, maitrikarar be-came a site of identity politics since it was used to counter the Hindutva stereotype that Muslims are more polygamous than Hindus.13 Jayoti Gupta has written about the ‘shailishri’ – an initiative in West Bengal – wherein disputes about maintenance and property find hearing.ReferencesAbu-Lughod, Lila (1990): ‘The Romance of Resistance: Tracing Transformations of Power through Bedovin Women’, American Ethnologist 17, 1: pp 41-55. Agnes, Flavia (1998): ‘Violence against Women: Review of Recent Enactments’ in Swapna Mukhopadhyay (ed),In the Name of Justice: Women and Law in Society, pp 15-41. Manohar, Delhi. – (1999):Law and Gender Inequality: The Politics of Women’s Rights in India, Oxford University Press. – (2005): ‘To Whom Do Experts Testify? Ideological Challenges of Feminist Jurisprudence’,Economic & Political Weekly, 40 (18).Bacchetta, Paola (2002): ‘Rescaling Transnational “Queerdom”: Lesbian and “Lesbian” Identitary-Positionalities in Delhi in the 1980s’, Antipode, 34 (5), 947–973.Basu, Srimati (ed) (2006): Dowry and Inheritance: Issues in Contemporary Indian Feminism, Zed Books, New Delhi.Baxi, Pratiksha (2005): ‘The Social and Juridical Framework of Rape in India: Case Studies in Gujarat’, unpublished PhD Thesis, Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi. – (2006): ‘Habeas Corpus in the Realm of Love: Liti-gating Marriages of Choice in India’, Australian Feminist Law Journal, 25:59-78.Baxi, Upendra, Vasudha Dhagamwar, Raghunath Kelkar and Lotika Sarkar (1979): ‘An Open Letter to the Chief Justice of India’, Supreme Court Cases 4:17-22. Baxi, Upendra (1986): Towards a Sociology of Indian Law, Satvahan Publications, New Delhi.Butalia, Urvashi (1999):The Other Side of Silence: Voices from the Partition of India, Oxford Univer-sity Press, Delhi.Chakravarti, Uma (2003): Gendering Caste: Through a Feminist Lens, Stree, Calcutta.Chowdhry, Prem (2004): ‘Private Lives, State Inter-vention: Cases of Runaway Marriage in Rural North India’,Modern Asian Studies, 38, 1: 55-84. – (2007): Contentious Marriages, Eloping Couple: Gender, Caste and Patriarchy in Northern India, Oxofrd University Press, New Delhi.Cohn, Bernard S (1965): ‘Anthropological Notes on Disputes and Law in India’, Special Issue, ‘Ethno-graphy of Law’, Laura Nader (ed), American Anthropologist 67, 6:82-122 Part 2.Das, Veena (1974): ‘Sociology of Law’ inICSSR: A Survey of Research in Sociology and Social Anthro-pology, Vol 2, Popular Prakashan, Bombay. – (1990): Critical Events: An Astrological Perspective on Contemporary India, Oxford University Press, New Delhi. – (1996): ‘Sexual Violence, Discursive Formations and the State’, Economic & Political Weekly, Vol XXXI, (35, 36 and 37): 2411-23.

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