Journal article Open Access

Women in Conflict Areas: Insights from Temsula Ao's These Hills Called Home: Stories from a War Zone

K B Veio Pou

In times of war and conflict, sexual violence against women is often reported. Such measures are also used as weapons of war against the opposing forces. In the 1950s and 60s the confrontation between the Indian armed forces and the Naga undergrounds peaked, resulting in lots of deaths, including innocent civilians. Temsula Ao's collection of short stories entitled These Hills Called Home: Stories from a War Zone captures some of the poignant moments of the troubled times. This paper analyses two stories from the volume which deals with sexual violence against women. While on one hand the narratives recount the trauma faced by the Nagas in the hands of the Indian armed forces, it also highlights the universality of the subject of women's suffering in times of conflict in different parts of the world. Another thrust of the paper is also to argue that women in patriarchal society are doubly marginalized. In the case of the Nagas too, the patriarchal structures often silences the narratives of women from emerging to the fore. But the active campaigns of the Naga Mothers Association and other like-minded organizations have risen to fight for dignity and justice. Keywords Temsula Ao, Nagas, sexual

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