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Showing posts from March, 2015

Rassundari Das

I just finished doing a history project on the life of a girl child in the early 19th century. While the project wasn't an awful lot of fun (writing pages and pages does tend to become tedious), I did learn quite a bit. One of the things that I learned that I thought was pretty neat was the story of a woman named Rassundari Das. She was a Bengali woman who was born in 1809 and died sometime near the end of the 19th century. Her claim to fame is that she was the first Indian person to write an autobiography.

Personally, I've always felt that autobiographies show extreme conceit - I mean, just how big-headed would you have to be to go out and write a book chronicling your own life? But I'm not here (much as I may wish I was) to discuss the pros and cons of autobiographies - I'm here to discuss Rassundari Das. She was born in Bengal (probably the great-great-grandmother of the chap who started K.C.Das Sweets, eh?) in a high-caste, low-income, conservative Hindu family. Sh…