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About The Gender and Women's Studies Collection

The Gender and Women's Studies Collection

The Gender and Women's Studies Collection brings together, in digital form, primary and secondary materials relating to the the exploration of politics, history, and society from a transnational and multicultural women's perspective. Although this collection is still in its infancy, future additions may include archival as well as published materials and may be drawn from a variety of formats: books, manuscripts, prints, photographs, audio and video, and more. Our first submission to the collection is a group of grassroots posters from the Indian feminist organization, Olakh (meaning Identity). The posters have been collected from different women’s groups and feminist organizations from all over India. These posters are not simply beautiful pieces of material culture created by individual artists. Most of the posters are the outcome of a collective political process in which community members, activists, students, and/or survivors brainstorm together to translate a deep social concern into words and images.

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The Olakh Poster Collection


Welcome to Olakh and the University of Wisconsin’s digital archive of grassroots feminist posters from India. India has been home to a vibrant women’s movement (or rather women’s movements) with a global influence. Historically, grassroots women’s organizations -- initiated and sustained by farmers, students, workers and housewives alike -- have been the backbone of the women’s movement. These groups have had a vast repertoire of communication strategies for creating awareness, mobilizing support, and protesting against injustice. However, posters have been one of the most widely and effectively used communication media.