A digital magazine on sexuality, based in the Global South: We are working towards cultivating safe, inclusive, and self-affirming spaces in which all individuals can express themselves without fear, judgement or shame

Communities and Sexuality

Its a still from the movie, Khamosh Pani,featuring Kirron Kher, standing with her back towards two men, one is a Sikh wearing a red turban offering something to the woman and the other man is looking towards them. Screen reader support enabled. Its a still from the movie, Khamosh Pani,featuring Kirron Kher, standing with her back towards two men, one is a Sikh wearing a red turban offering something to the woman and the other man is looking towards them.

Review: Khamosh Pani – What heaven is there for me?

Who fights, who flees and who flows with the tide? Branching off from the community, with all the comforts that it offers, can become a true test of character.This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Partition of India – a significant chapter in our history when millions of people were faced with this dilemma.
A photo of Pawan Dhall wearing a blue shirt, speaking on the mike with book shelves in the background

Interview: Pawan Dhall on his own journey of building communities – Part 1

In this issue of In Plainspeak, we interview Pawan Dhall, Founding Trustee of Varta Trust, queer activist, writer and social researcher. He is also the editor of the Varta webzine, promoting and sustaining dialogue on gender and sexuality, across diverse groups of people. As Pawan says, “We are all strung together on a spectrum of gender and sexuality, and we don’t have to be fixed at a single point on the spectrum throughout our lives.”
a cartoon sketch of the yin and yang symbol

The Paradox of Principles

I do not feel the need to fight the feminist war within these spaces all the time, now that it has become my home. I have come to terms with the idea that certain contradictions can co-exist peacefully like the yin and yang. But still, sometimes, my mind is roiled in conflict, with me cautiously trying to balance my two identities – the feminist and the army officer’s wife. Nevertheless, I am unwilling to give up one for the other (even if I might be perceived as being less of one of them). So I continue to be an individual with two seeming contradictions: a feminist army-officer’s-wife!
Its a poster of the singer, Munni Ketki Wali. Its in black and white, where a lady is smiling, wearing winged eye-liner, she has long hair. The caption on the poster says, मुन्नी केतकीवाली, Munni Kethkiwali and the names of her songs- दरोगा जी से कहिये गहरा कुआँ रस्सी छोटी सी बीच बज्रया खटमल काटे लढाये लियो अँखियाँ

Hum Aapki Hain Samdhan*

Let me begin with a confession. I have always loved the idea of marriage. What is one to do when one’s politics are so at odds with one’s pleasure! But then politics and pleasure are not always so distinct. And so, after having seriously contemplated a career in wedding choreography (yes it’s a thing!) and…
A photo/gif from the set of comics,where the girl is winking her eye, there is a caption saying 'good luck!'

Brushstrokes: 9 Simple Ways to Become the Perfect Sanskari Woman

In many societies, women are assigned the role of ‘protecting’ or upholding tradition and culture. Their movements, behaviour and conversations are policed by their communities in an effort to ensure that women fulfil the often unattainable goal of being unwavering bastions of tradition. Perplexingly, the traditional attributes that are so romanticized by the community at…
Its a still from the movie, Hum Aapke Hain Koun, featuring Madhuri Dixit, Reema Lagoo & Sahila Chadda

हम आपकी हैं समधन

शुरुआत में ही स्वीकार लेता हूँ की मुझे शादियों का बहुत शौक़ है।   जब अपनी राजनैतिक सोच और व्यक्तिगत शौक़ में उत्तर-दक्षिण का अंतर हो तो आख़िर क्या किया जाए? पर सोच और आनंद देने वाले शौक़ का अंतर कभी-कभी इतना स्पष्ट नहीं होता। विवाह आयोजनों के दौरान नृत्य कोरियोग्राफी करने (जी हाँ, यह…
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