BELLEVUE SALONS | Raising Feminist Sons | The Upstairs Studio [MUMBAI]



The tenth edition of Bellevue Salons, conceptualized, curated and arranged in partnership with Tara* Kaushal (forthcoming author, Why Indian Men Rape), brings together experts that weigh in on the virtue of raising feminist sons. The salon will be held at The Upstairs Studio (located at 14, Veronica Street, Ranwar, Bandra West) on Friday, 30 June at 7 – 9 pm.

From early development, boys in India are raised with a deep sense of entitlement. The gender privilege manifests itself at every strata of our society, regardless of class, caste or creed. From the politics of birth and the incessant quest for a male child, gender privileging continues through childhood–through food politics, the right to education and play, and religious and cultural rituals that enforce the gender paradigms of inequality and difference.

While these inequalities have a massive impact on the psyche and reality of women in society, it affects men too. Restricted by gender norms, boys are often discouraged from displaying nuanced emotions and developing empathy; from pursuing non-traditional roles and asking for help when they need it. De-stabilized by an ego-driven self and the inability to connect deeply with others, these boys enter adulthood with malignant attitudes that can become a breeding ground for hostility and violence.

Spanning three major ethnological norms—of the home and childhood, education and society, popular culture and religion—we will focus on systemic failures and corrective measures to reimagine masculinity and manhood from its childhood source. The need for such a discussion stems from the greater need to stem gender violence in all its forms, from microaggressions to rape culture.

We are excited to have Bishakha Datta (Filmmaker, Activist; co founder & Executive Director, Point of View); Vidya Kamat (Visual Artist, Researcher & Scholar, Ancient Indian Myth & Culture); Kiran Manral (Blogger & Author, Karmic Kids) and Shilpa Phadke (Assoc. Prof., School of Media and Cultural Studies, TISS; co-author, Why Loiter?) in a conversation moderated by Tara* Kaushal.


Bellevue Salons is a unique conversational platform founded by artist, writer, curator and TED Fellow Sharmistha Ray in 2014. This mobile concept aims to integrate multidisciplinary art forms and augment participatory and collaborative modes of engagement with contemporary culture in surprising new ways.

Why Indian Men Rape is a multimedia gender journalism and activism project that spans two books, a documentary and an active online presence, to thoroughly explore the gamut of unique ethnological reasons—social, cultural, traditional, legal, economic, geographic, religious, psychological, etc—that cause sexual violence in the subcontinent.

The Upstairs Studio is a space conceived by artist and designer Lekha Washington. A place filled with ideas, art and design, this 150-year-old restored heritage bungalow is tucked away in a quaint village in Bandra, Mumbai.

For press/event enquiries, please contact Priyanka Sutaria at +91-98231-07880.