Research D'silva Keshia

127400 €

Defining dangers to women: a social representations approach to women’s rights campaigns of advocacy organizations in India

Tieteellinen tutkimus / siihen pohjautuva työ | Nelivuotinen

In this project, I explore how dangers to women are represented by different organisations working for gender justice in India. This topic is pertinent given India’s status as the most dangerous country in the world for women, generating public debate on the treatment of women in India. I will focus on representations at three levels- at the level of production by interviewing communication managers of the organizations, at the level of content by analysing campaign material and at the level of reception by exploring public response to these campaigns. This will provide a multi-faceted picture on how dangers to women in India are constructed by agencies promoting gender justice, the politics involved in such constructions and the messages derived by the public from these campaigns. The theoretical framework of this project is social representations (SR), a social psychological theory that deals with everyday constructions of knowledge. The project will use mixed methods in collecting data and a range of analytical approaches including social representations, visual rhetoric and semiotics. It is also multi-disciplinary, connecting social psychological research with tools of media and communication studies. The findings will be used to publish four articles in international peer reviewed journals. Indian newspapers and blogs of think tanks with a wide following such as the Center for Social Research could be another channel for disseminating my findings beyond academia.