Shrayana Bhattacharya on ‘Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh’ and women’s agency | On Books podcast

Shrayana Bhattacharya speaks to us on the economic burden of being a woman and the hidden tax that working women have to pay

April 13, 2022 06:24 pm | Updated 06:48 pm IST

In this episode, we are joined by Shrayana Bhattacharya author of ‘Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh: India’s Lonely Young Women and The Search for Intimacy And Independence’. She is a technocrat who works with the World Bank as an economist. The genre-bending book maps the economic and personal trajectories - the jobs, desires, prayers, love affairs and rivalries of a diverse group of women. Deep adoration for actor Shahrukh Khan is the only unifying factor among these women. It talks about the hidden tax that working women have to pay. Breaking all the social science rules, the book talks about the economic burden of being a woman through individual stories. The reader gets to see and feel first-hand of the emotional cost of pay disparity, skewed labour markets and simply lack of freedom to choose. It took Ms. Bhattacharya 15-years to cover this longitudinal journey from the slums of Ahmedabad in 2006 where, as a young researcher she had gone for her first field trip.

Guest: Shrayana Bhattacharya, technocrat who works with the World Bank as an economist

Host: Sobhana K. Nair

Edited by Ranjani Srinivasan

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