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dc.contributor.authorDevika, J.
dc.identifier.citationDevika, J. (2002) Family planning as 'liberation' : the ambiguities of 'emancipation from biology' in Keralam. CDS working papers, no.335. Trivandrum: CDS.en_GB
dc.description.abstractIn the early debates on the desirability of artificial birth control in Malayalee society, artificial birth control was often opposed on the grounds that it undercut some of the crucial conditions for the ushering in of full-fledged modernity, which was frequently conceived of in entirely Developmentalist terms. The concern expressed was mainly that it was incompatible with the project of modern self-building, tied as it was to the attainment of a high degree of sexual self- control. However, by the 1960s, such fears had vanished or become marginal, and now the reverse appeared true, i.e., Family Planning appeared to be part and parcel of disciplined, abstemious and prudent domesticity. The paper tries to explore some aspects of this transformation of associations. Some of the conditions that made this transformation possible had been already taking shape before the full-scale arrival of the Family Planning Programme into Keralam. These included changes in key notions like the nature and social function of sexual desire and activity, modern conjugal marriage and the forces sustaining it, and so on. The Family Planning propaganda of mid 20th century was bolstered, directly or indirectly, by these ongoing elaborations. Also important was the Family Planning propaganda’s active furthering of the emergent forms of power in modern Malayalee society that were already defining and guiding its modernisation, such as the newer form of patriarchy in which (modern educated) men design and oversee the process of ‘Women’s Liberation’, the new elitism of modern knowledge that marginalises all other ways of knowing and sharply differentiates ‘mental’ work and ‘physical’ labour, the passivising power of reformism which authorises non- reciprocal relations between the reformers and the objects of reform. The overall effort of the paper is to highlight the ambiguities of ‘liberation’ in 20th century Keralam and to problematise the tradition/modernity binary that too often organises the writing of the history of 20th century Malayalee society. Key words: natural birth-control, artificial birth control, modern, liberation, modern conjugality, domesticity, sexual self disciplineen_GB
dc.publisherCentre for Development Studiesen_GB
dc.relation.ispartofseriesCDS working papers;335
dc.titleFamily planning as 'liberation' : the ambiguities of 'emancipation from biology' in Keralamen_GB
dc.typeSeries paper (non-IDS)en_GB
dc.rights.holderCentre for Development Studiesen_GB

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