Activist Research: How the All India Democratic Women’s Association Builds Knowledge to Change the World
In an interview with R. Chandra, this dossier discusses the strategic role of activist research in the All India Democratic Women’s Association’s fight against caste oppression, patriarchy, and economic exploitation. AIDWA’s survey and the campaigns that they generated deepened members’ understanding of the reality of caste oppression. In research, activists found a powerful tool to substantiate and systematise their own experiences on the ground, gain newer and broader insights, and understand the anatomy of gender oppression among different sections of women.
Ammukkutty, 88 year communist veteran was an active member of the Agricultural Workers Union. She rose to Central Committee of the Union through her hard work. Ammukkutty was born in a poor Dalit household which most agricultural workers belong to. Her life is filled with struggles throughout, fighting hunger and poverty. She mobilised Adivasis and Agricultural workers under the red flag and waged struggles for better wage and land and against inhuman treatment and oppressive taxes.
This study looks at the life and legacy of Kanak Mukherjee, a fighter for the people and people’s struggles who was born in undivided Bengal, India, in 1921. The rich trajectory of her activism teaches us about the history of women in organising in local, national, and international struggles that linked women’s rights to anti-imperialist and anti- capitalist struggles throughout the twentieth century.