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This essay tries to reflect on the least digestible aspects of the well-known poet and fiction writer Kamala Das / Surayya’s thought. It seeks to examine her foray into politics in the light of the history of the discursive shaping of modern gender in Kerala on the one hand, and of feminist thought that has sought to revalue love as a virtue in public life on the other. I seek to read her repeated calls to infuse politics with love as part of an attempt to articulate an ‘affective politics’. I focus on three aspects of her writing that have been sources of ‘interpretative trouble’ for literary criticism in Kerala: self-love, love for the Masculine Other, and ‘love for the people’. What results is an imagining of politics strikingly similar to feminist imaginations elsewhere, which does encourage us to re-examine Das’s self-professed anti-feminism.

In: Journal of the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists
In: Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte
In: Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte