A couple of months ago, I had the privilege of finally meeting Lalita Ramdas. In the course of our conversation, she said she had been wondering whether peace would finally come to South Asia when women came together, side-stepping the usual issues, to work on issues relating to the environment.
The confluence of ‘women, nature, peace’ is one that is common to essentialist feminism, but it is also a practical connection. Women are most disempowered when there is ecological degradation. They pay the price for it at multiple levels including their own physical safety. They are also differently affected by conflict and rarely develop a vested interest in it. So is this old conflation, in fact, a natural conjunction of interests, issues?
EPI’s vision integrates environmental awareness and gender equity into its work. Prajnya’s own broader vision includes Initiatives that focus on women’s rights, on teaching peace and on creating security.
What do you think? Let’s begin the new year with this conversation!