The final paper will primarily engage with ‘feminist critical discourse analysis’ (Lazar 2010:141-142) that derives from Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA), an interdisciplinary approach influenced by Norman Fairclough, Teun A. van Dijk and other contributors (Wodak & Meyer 2009:3). Lazar engages directly with feminist discourse analysis to highlight the complex relationship between power and ideology. This will be explored when analysing the heteronormative social order versus the representations of hijra identities and way of life through various forms of discourses (i.e. writing, visual media and activism). By employing an intersectional approach, I discuss the diverse gender categories of trans-identified people in India in connection to sexuality, class, (sexual) citizenship and social/political status. This approach reflects CDA’s purpose “to investigate critically social inequality as it is expressed, signalled, constituted, legitimized…by language use (or in discourse)” (Wodak & Meyer 2009:2). In relation to CDA’s concept of ‘semiosis’ and its relationship with ‘social practices’ (Wodak & Meyer 2009:122), I will highlight hijra experiences which are translated into discourses expressing causal oppression and efforts of resistance. A critical discourse feminist analysis will allow me to integrate feminist principles (and vital insights from LGBT studies/queer theory) when theorizing and analysing trans people’s issues/oppression, primarily based on functions of gender and sexuality in relation to power and ideology.
Critical Discourse Studies (CDS) engages with a sociocognitive approach, which is defined by Dijk as a “study of cognition in the critical analysis of discourse, communication and interaction (Wodak & Meyer 2009:64). By incorporating this approach, I will analyse the social/political/economic issues discussed in hijra narratives to understand how the subjective representations and specific discourses used extends trans/queer knowledge. Focusing on the role of the mind and its relation to/interaction with society (Wodak & Meyer 65-66), I will incorporating concepts of the ‘event models’ (Wodak & Meyer 77-78) to analyze hijra personal experiences, representation of body, gender and desires, and recollected memory of oppression interpreted by hijras from a subjective position. I anticipate that investigating the way hijras understand the socio-political approaches of the dominant/hegemonic society will reveal diverse interpretations of specific issues based on the effect of discourse/discourse-making. The meddling of individuals and collectives/the social will portray that various types of social representations articulated in hijra discourses shape beliefs and perspectives of this community.
The shaping of political, economic and social conditions,
Using an empirical-analytical inquiry, I gather and analyze films, interviews, ethnography, autobiography and reports related to hijras as the primary resources and methods of...