Recently a New York Times article, "From Untouchable to Businesswoman" (July 22, 2010), carried the story of Kakuben Lalabhai Parmar, an illiterate Scheduled Caste woman from Gujarat who was selling her patchwork embroideries at New York's posh Asia Society. Thanks to intervention in India twenty years ago from SEWA, the Self-Employed Women's Association, she came out of seclusion in her house to participate in society, while helping to preserve the traditional handicrafts of her village. The result is a globe-trotting artisan-businesswoman who exchanges hugs with her clients, buys shampoos at CVS for her daughters back home in the village, and seems at ease in new environments.
McDermott, Rachel Fell
"Viewpoint: What I See: Little Indias, Caste, and the Church in the West,"
Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies:
Vol. 23, Article 11.
Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.7825/2164-6279.1463