When history empowers: Recovering the life stories of the begums of Bhopal for women’s learning and gender equality

Siobhan Lambert-Hurley*, Radhika Iyengar, Nafhesa Ali

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bhopal in central India has a unique history as a city ruled by a dynasty of four successive Muslim women rulers (1819–1926). Yet, in Bhopal city today, they are rarely commemorated or even remembered. This article documents an initial study undertaken by an interdisciplinary academic team (including a historian, a sociologist and an applied education researcher) in collaboration with local women’s organization Mahashakti Seva Kendra. The project explores how the inspirational life stories of the Begums of Bhopal can be recovered to empower contemporary women, revealing the immediate impact and future potential of local history for women’s learning and gender empowerment.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberdbad015
Pages (from-to)134-152
Number of pages19
JournalHistory Workshop Journal
Early online date20 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023

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