THE PAKISTAN DEVELOPMENT REVIEW
Rita Manchanda (ed.). Women, War and Peace in South Asia: Beyond Victimhood to Agency. New Delhi: Sage Publications, 2001. 304 pages. Paperback. Indian Rs 295.00.
In the past few decades, South Asia has experienced a number of intra-state (caste, class, communal, ethnic or nationality-based) conflicts. Civil society has lost its existence as a consequence of the panic created by the security forces and armed groups (two major parties involved in the conflict). The worst victim in these riots are women, who have been affected both directly and indirectly. However, in these instances, women, instead of moving only in their private sphere with their traditional role as a victim (on humanitarian grounds), have surfaced with a new responsibility in the public sphere, which used to be the preserve of the male. There was no choice left for them except to take up arms to protect themselves and their families.