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  • Published: 5 July 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784744106
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 320
  • RRP: $35.00

Nine Paths

A Year in the Life of an Indian Village



Lyrical, immersive non-fiction chronicling the stories of nine Muslim women on the margins of modern India, from anthropologist and ethnographer Dr Lexi Stadlen

Revelatory, lyrical and immersive, this is an extraordinary book that takes you deep into these ordinary women's worlds... Their stories are urgent and forcefully articulated - and this book gives us the chance to hear them.


On an island at the eastern edge of India, rural, remote and dense with jungle, is a Muslim village. In an ever-shifting landscape of mangroves and rivers, the women here dwell among contradictions, constrictions and change in a place where one's neighbours are often too close for comfort.

Nine Paths follows the lives of nine of these women, and their families, over the course of a year - from one monsoon season to another. There are weddings to celebrate and deaths to mourn, difficult marriages to navigate and tragedies to overcome, as we observe the everyday drudgery and unexpected turmoil, and the dreams of something better.

Revelatory, lyrical and immersive, this is an extraordinary book that takes you deep into these ordinary women's worlds. Anthropologist Lexi Stadlen spent sixteen months in this village, talking, listening, and getting to know these women, who were willing to share their complicated, fascinating lives. Their stories are urgent and forcefully articulated - and this book gives us the chance to hear them.

  • Published: 5 July 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784744106
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 320
  • RRP: $35.00

About the author

Alexandra Stadlen

Dr Lexi Stadlen is an anthropologist and ethnographer with a PhD in Social Anthropology from the London School of Economics. She spent two and a half years living and conducting on-the-ground research in India. Sixteen months of this was in a remote village in the West Bengal lowlands, where she learnt the local language and over time, came to develop a deep understanding of the women's lives and experiences. She is the winner of the 2019 Bayly Prize, awarded by the Royal Asiatic Society for an outstanding thesis on an Asian topic completed at a British university in the preceding year. She now lives in London with her husband, son and their adopted Mumbai street cat Shiva.

Praise for Nine Paths

Intimate, insightful and powerful, Nine Paths pulls the reader deep into what it means to be a Muslim woman in India, and allows us to appreciate the strength, resilience and bravery in the face of the many forms of violence negotiated daily. Lexi Stadlen vividly brings to life the best of immersive ethnography

Alpa Shah, author of Nightmarch: Among India's Revolutionary Guerrillas

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