Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Jaipur Literature Festival - Against the Wind

24 Jan 2010

Namita Gokhale in conversation with Sister Jesme, author of Amen: An Autobiography of a Nun and P Sivakami - the first Tamil Dalit Woman to write a novel..
Sister Jesme is a Malyali Catholic Nun who has recently left the convent in protest against the abuses she faced within the walls of the convent. Her book is a real life account fo what goes on behind those walls. While it was a struggle for her to go through it all while she was on the inside, she feels the struggle isn't any easier on the outside. The only thing that gives her encouragement is that her courage to come forward is prompting others from within the priesthood and nunnery to haltingly come forward with their own horrifying experiences.

P Sivakami is an an ex-IAS officer. Her books speak of the poor and downtrodden and the misery they undergo. When she was first called a "Dalit writer", writing about the "Dalit Experience" it upset her, but she now welcomes the terms because she feels that it brings awareness to the Dalit problems.

Both courageous women in their own way, it was inspiring to hear of face how they conquered their fears and overcame their battles.

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