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Institute of Asian and Oriental Studies URPP Asia and Europe (2006–2017)

Writing Autobiography as an LGBTIQ Activist in India

A. Revathi (former director of SANGAMA, Bangalore)

Guest Lecture, November 24, 2016, 16:15–18:00

The guest lecture is held in the context of the South Asia Forum.


Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology and URPP Asia and Europe


Room AND 3.46, Andreasstrasse 15, 8050 Zürich


Registration required by November 17, 2016:


A. Revathi is a writer, poet, actress and activist from Tamil Nadu who fights for human rights, especially for the LGBTIQ people as well as Dalits and Adivasis in India. Being the first author writing about Hijras/Thirunangais in Asia, Revathi wrote a scientific anthology of life-stories from other Thirunangais in Tamil Nadu - «Our lives, our words: Telling Aravani lifestories» (2011; Tamil Original in 2004) - for which she conducted research through interviews. In addition to that she is the author of two autobiographical books - «The Truth about me: A Hijra Life Story» (2010) and «A Life in Trans Activism» (2016) - in which she narrates her experiences as a Hijra/Thirunangai in India. On the basis of her writing we would like to discuss with Revathi how she perceives the relationship between literature and social sciences in general and between autobiographical accounts and ethnographies in particular.