We had two workshops, one in May 2018 -- designed as a methodology workshop; and the other, in October 2018 -- designed as a writing workshop. We also invited, in the spirit of the other projects, discussants/‘critical commentators’ to provide real world checks and balances on the judgments. In the first phase of the project, we are rewriting 45 judgments and their commentaries to be shared between three publications.
Workshop on Feminist Judgments: Comparative Socio-Legal Perspectives on Judicial Decision-Making and Gender Justice
One of our Convenors, Jhuma Sen, participated in a workshop titled Feminist Judgments: Comparative Socio-Legal Perspectives on Judicial Decision Making and Gender Justice from 11 May to 12 May, 2017, at the Oñati International Institute for the Sociology of Law. Sixteen scholars from eight different countries (Australia, Canada, England, Ireland, India, Scotland, New Zealand and the United States) came together for this workshop. The workshop provided participants with a platform to engage in a structured conversation about how different socio-legal contexts affect the various Feminist Judgments projects (Link to the Oñati Workshop: http://www.iisj.net/en/workshops/feminist-judgments-comparative-socio-legal-perspectives-judicial-decision-making-and)
Workshop on Feminist Judgment Project: Gendering Judicial Decision Making in India
Our first informal reading workshop, titled Feminist Judgment Project: Gendering Judicial Decision Making in India, was held at Jindal Global Law School on the 31st May, 2017.
Participants shared their preliminary thoughts on the judgments they wanted to rewrite, the particular feminist legal question they wanted to address, and the dilemmas they faced.
One of the common dilemmas seemed to be about the choice of judgments:
What are the criteria for picking judgments for a feminist rewriting?
Must they necessarily be Supreme Court judgments? One may find a judgment to be problematic and it may raise a feminist question. But, it is of “low” legal relevance (single judge bench decision from thirty years ago, which does not figure in most legal commentaries, casebooks or later judgments on the same issue). Is there any value in rewriting such judgments?
Should judgments be selected based on the feminist theoretical questions they raise, irrespective of their “real world” relevance or should the primary criteria be its likely impact on the lives of a large number of women?
Additionally, the participants reflected on what made a judgment, a feminist one? Are there any stylistic features peculiar to feminist judgments? Is a feminist judgment, necessarily a pro-women judgment?
There was wide consensus that in the Indian context, a feminist project cannot limit itself to “woman” as a self-evident, biological category and that it was necessary to make it explicit right from the beginning that the project thought of women in relation to their caste, class, religion, sexuality, dis/ability and so on..
4.00-4.30 | Postcards from around the world: History and the Method(s) of the Feminist Judgment Project(s) | Jhuma Sen
4.30-4.40 | Illustrating a method: In the matter of Djappari (Re Tuckiar)  FNCA 1 | Oishik Sircar
4.40-5.00 | Discussion
5.00-6.00| Reading Judgments, Righting Judgments
Mrs. Mukta Devi v. The Official Liquidator | (2004) 138 PLR 786
Reading Leelamma v. Dilip Kumar | AIR 1993 Ker 57
Reading Anuj Garg & Ors. v. Hotel Association of India | AIR 2008 SC 663
Ashrita Prasad Kotha
Princess Maheshwari Devi of Pratapgarh v. Commissioner of Income Tax | (1983) 33 CTR Bom 117
Ranganatha v. Jayamma | ILR 1996 Karnataka 1542
6.00-6.10| Break 6.10-6.30| Discussion
6.30-7.30| Envisioning the Feminist Judgment Project in India