Deepa Dhanraj  

A writer and award-winning filmmaker, Deepa Dhanraj has been actively involved in the women's movement – with a focus on political participation, health, and education – for more than four decades. She was one of the founding members of Yugantar, a feminist film collective that produced pioneering films about women's labor and resistance to domestic violence. Working through feminist politics, her extensive filmography spans three decades covering films on the violence and coercion of population control programs, Muslim women's courts that offer petitioners an alternative to patriarchal verdicts issued by Sharia courts, and the rise of Hindu majoritarianism. She has a special interest in education and she has worked extensively with government schools to create pedagogy suited for problems faced by first generation learners who come from Dalit and Adivasi communities. She also teaches video production to women activists and regularly lectures on media theory in both academic and public settings. (1/23)

Available Title(s):

Invoking Justice

A film by Deepa Dhanraj, 2011, 85 min, Color

In Southern India, family disputes are settled by Jamaats—all male bodies which apply Islamic Sharia law to cases without allowing women to be present, even to defend themselves. Recognizing this fundamental inequity, a group of women in 2004 established a women’s Jamaat, which soon became a network of 12,000 members spread over 12 districts. Despite…

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Something Like a War

A film by Deepa Dhanraj, 1991, 52 min, Color

SOMETHING LIKE A WAR is a chilling examination of India’s family planning program from the point of view of the women who are its primary targets. It traces the history of the family planning program and exposes the cynicism, corruption and brutality which characterizes its implementation. As the women themselves discuss their status, sexuality, fertility…

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