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Monday, December 12, 2005

Phoolan Devi- the Real Bandit Queen

last week, guest dj Adam Nathanson was telling me about a movie that was released in 1994 based on Phoolan Devi's life (Bandit Queen.) I have yet to see this film, but apparently, when Phoolan Devi saw it, she angrily objected being portrayed as a victim and threatened to set herself on fire outside the theatre if the screenings continued.. plus, the ridiculous fact that they never even interviewed her when the script was being written. Anyway, with all that aside, her story is pretty incredible (there are several books in french and english about her, including an auto-biography) Here's a fairly objective bio of this legendary woman from a website that compiles famous obituaries (a strange concept for a webpage but very interesting) This woman, from a "lower caste", stood up against the men who dared to do wrong to her, and was eventually elected to a seat in Indian Parliament where she vowed to fight for women's rights. She was tragically assasinated in 2001 by a man who sought revenge against her for killing a family member and dishonoring his caste. "While she was undoubtedly an outlaw who brought misery and mayhem and death to those she assailed, Phoolan Devi also embodied the resentments of the lower castes and women." (taken from link)

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