Sikh identity involves intermeshing of several historical and present strands of consciousness. As in other religions, the situation of Sikh women and their experiences are conditioned by multiple factors including identity, socio-economic status, and the political context.
The collection focuses on three distinct themes–texts, conditions of Sikh women in India, and women in diasporic contexts–dealing with women's lives and religious experiences. The essays discuss the way aesthetics and religion merges in the unitary experience of the sacred in Sikh tradition. They also explore gender in Sikh theology and society.
One of the first works of its kind to bring together ‘women' and being ‘Sikh', this volume engages with issues like religion, rituals, literature, sexuality, and nationalism and their link with identity-formation of Sikh women. It analyses significant issues of gender and religion and provides an empirical as well as theoretical structure to the debate.
In their introduction, Doris Jakobsh and Eleanor Nesbitt explore the myriad themes of studies on Sikh women–an emerging area for historians, sociologists, and anthropologists alike. They outline major developments and also break new ground with empirical evidence from their research.
A unique interdisciplinary collection of meticulous research and originality, this book will interest scholars, teachers, and students of Sikhism, women's studies, history, religion and sociology.
Doris R. Jakobsh Associate Professor, Religious Studies, University of Waterloo, Canada.