The Social and Reciprocal Agency
This chapter pursues the seemingly much more basic questions of how women were targeted in activism and why it is that women participated in programs like the Arivoli Iyakkam in the first place. It seeks to understand the very process of mobilization from the perspective of activism. The Arivoli Iyakkam worked through a range of idioms in developing their version of grassroots feminism. The movement was, in fact, successful to the degree that it developed a style of “reciprocal agency” through which women paradoxically participate in a movement designed to foster a sense of autonomy out of a sense of obligation or duty to activists themselves.
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