Realities of urban women can be conflicting and complex, it can also be comic and contain melodies of everyday life. In the session, two well known women authors from different genres came together to discuss their recently published books, which ironically catered to similar ideas. 

One of the authors, Sudha Menon is a celebrated Indian author of several non fiction books and for the session she brought alive her recently published book , “Feisty at Forty”. and provided insights into her book. Another one was Khyrunnisa, a prize winning author of children’s fiction and columnist, who diverted from her usual  style to write the book “Tongue and Teeth- the funny side of life”. 

Both the authors voiced the struggles women faces when they reach fifty and narrated how how life has started to change for them as well. They expressed how the everyday habits of grooming, dressing up, choosing colours became a matter of grave concern, as outsiders always have an invariable opinion on them. They also relayed how personal choices like the choice of lipstick colour, the colour of one’s hair, and what kind of dress to wear becomes more of a public and political choice than personal. It becomes the subject of mockery when it does not conform with what society expects from women at that age.  

Both Khyrunnisa and Sudha Menon expressed that with age they have developed a humorous lens towards life. These are reflected in their respective books. The authors told how they have shared several personal life experiences in the books, hoping to provide the audience a very relatable context for getting insight into women in their  fifties. 

Khyrunnisa related how with this book, she shifted radically from children’s literature to what she calls as a self reflective text, which gave her more time to think about herself.  

The title of the book, as told by the authors, referred to the day-to-day adventures which stood out from routine; it has nothing to do with misery or as the word might suggest something very unfortunate. The short stories are mostly humorous and funny in nature. Both the books are written in simple and direct language which directly addresses the audience either in a dialogue form or crisp narrations of an incident

In conclusion, I would like to say that Sudha Menon and Khyrunnisa are very influential personalities who leave a strong impact on the women in society, teaching us that we shouldn’t be insecure of our growing age rather cherish its beauty. 


About The Author

Aditi Dua is a Masters student in English with Communication Studies who has a knack for aesthetics and poetry. Apart from being a literature enthusiast, she highly celebrates challenging ideologies and provide disputing ideas of death. Always available for a conversation over good coffee. She currently writes for TheSeer