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An Eco-Feminist Revolution Is Underway in Pakistan's Hunza Valley

22 Apr 2019 Admin 74 Views
An Eco-Feminist Revolution Is Underway in Pakistan's Hunza Valley

In the disputed Karakoram mountains of northern Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, which brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war last month, the isolated Hunza valley feels cut off from the fractious politics surrounding it. As one approaches 8,200 feet, pine forests and orchards envelop villages that glint orange with apricots drying on their rooftops.

Mount Rakaposhi and the Hunza Valley. Credit: Sam Dalrymple
Mount Rakaposhi and the Hunza Valley. Credit: Sam Dalrymple

The blue and mustard shuttlecock burkhas, which are prevalent throughout the foothills, are non-existent here and unveiled women wander the streets, busking on street corners and leading tour groups. Over the last decade, Hunza has been at the centre of a remarkable eco-feminist movement, with women’s education and employment – primarily in the environmental sector – skyrocketing to some of the highest levels in South Asia.

 

In March this year, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) announced its decision to remove three chapters from its Class IX history textbook: on clothing and caste conflicts; the history of cricket; and the impact of colonial capitalism on peasants and farmers.

Within a month, it has proclaimed another, similar cut, this time in the Class X history textbook, which is to shed chapters on nationalism in Indo-China, on the rise of cities, and on ‘novels, society and history,’ getting rid of 72 out of around 200 pages. All this is part of a curriculum rationalisation exercise set in motion by the human resource development minister Prakash Javadekar, who has declared his intention of cutting the syllabus by half across all subjects in order to lessen the burden on school students.

 

In March this year, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) announced its decision to remove three chapters from its Class IX history textbook: on clothing and caste conflicts; the history of cricket; and the impact of colonial capitalism on peasants and farmers.

Within a month, it has proclaimed another, similar cut, this time in the Class X history textbook, which is to shed chapters on nationalism in Indo-China, on the rise of cities, and on ‘novels, society and history,’ getting rid of 72 out of around 200 pages. All this is part of a curriculum rationalisation exercise set in motion by the human resource development minister Prakash Javadekar, who has declared his intention of cutting the syllabus by half across all subjects in order to lessen the burden on school students.

 

 

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