In 2005, a committee of teachers, academicians, NGOs and practitioners were invited by NCERT to write new textbooks for middle schools. Those Social Science textbooks have been in circulation and in classrooms for 15 years. In 2022, some of the work the committee did in chapters around caste was deleted.
We made a film about this. Making Textbooks Feminist captures the thrilling process of translating abstract ideas around women’s work, masculinity and the politics of language into a humble textbook. Is adding more women as protagonists the answer? How important are the pronouns? What kind of images evoke citizenship in a way that it speaks about gender as powerfully as it does about democracy?
Dipta Bhog, Purwa Bharadwaj and Malini Ghosh from Nirantar, who were part of this committee, take you through some key moments from the making of these and other feminist textbooks, feisty fights included.
Film supported by Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, South Asia.
Conceptualised by Dipta Bhog
Directed by Sonali Ghosh for Jamun Films
Art Direction by Seonath Wakrambam for Jamun Films
Produced by Shabani Hassanwalia for The Third Eye.