Pink Sari Revolution, by Amana Fontanella-Khan, tells the story of the Gulabi Gang.
The gang’s story—of poverty-stricken, unlettered women standing up for themselves, struggling against centuries-old misogyny—inspires. “Hope is a very big thing,” one elderly member says. “Sampat gave it to us every time she came to the village.” Still, it needs to be asked how truly revolutionary the Gulabi Gang is—or can be—and the author doesn’t step back from storytelling to do so. In her account of a widow horrifically mistreated, then evicted, by her in-laws, she misses opportunities to explore the gang’s limits and thus risks overstating their impact. Read my review in the Summer 2013 Ms. Magazine.