A Life of Ashes: Widows in India

Indian miniature painted ca 1800 depicting sati (suttee) or widow-burning (© Wikimedia.org)

The ancient Indian practice of “sati” or “suttee”, widow-burning, was banned under British colonial rule in 1829, but in modern-day India the plight of a woman who loses her husband to death can still be a cruel fate that exposes a widow to isolation and discrimination. In some cases a widow suffers such a loss of social status that she is referred to only as “it” or “creature”. Dheera Sujan, whose own mother was widowed in India when she was a child, looked into this problem.

Produced and presented by Dheera Sujan

Vox Humana,16 August 2006