2019 — Kolkata, India
About this series
For the average Indian woman, life is the kitchen. Men have their own lives outside the home, while women pursue their monotonous household chores. Tradition attaches huge importance to chastity, which is essential for a woman to get married. In theory, Indian women are entitled to all the opportunities afforded to men, but in practice, there is a huge disparity between how men and women lead their lives. Economically dominant, Indian men often confine their women to the home, denying them freedom and a chance to grow.
Chhordima is my grandma. Since I was a child, she inspired me to navigate this male-dominated society with a positive attitude. I saw how she carried this happiness with her, in spite of the constant family pressures she was under. As she got older, I saw a distance develop between grandma and her children, who pursued their own professional and family lives. She lost her husband and ended up completely alone. But still, I found in her a great enthusiasm for life. She went about her daily tasks and kept herself happy by focusing on her grandchildren. She has an incredible inner strength, self respect and capacity for love. This is my tribute to this great lady in my life.
Ranita Roy was born in Andul, a small town near Kolkata, India. She is a documentary photographer and visual artist. She completed Hostile environment awareness training (HEAT) at Jakarta, by Thomson Reuters (2020). Her work has been published in various media publications including Reuters, The Washington Post Magazine, The New York Times, The Caravan magazine, Al Jazeera, The Guardian, The National (UAE), DW News, The Economic Times, Hindustan Times, Feature Shoot, BBC.
In 2019 Ranita joined Reuters as a freelance photojournalist. She has worked on numerous personal projects including Old Age Happiness, Sleep Paralysis (Research work), Flood and cyclone-affected areas, Child Labor, Health care issues, Animal rights. She has won numerous scholarships including the Scholarship from NOOR Images, Timothy Allen Photography Scholarship 2018, and VII Academy (2019 and 2020). Her work has been recognized numerous times including by UNESCO (Climate change). She received the 7th National Photography Award (India), an Honorable Mention in Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award and she was a top 10 finalist of the International Women Photographer Award 2017. She was Shortlisted in the 2020 Inge Morath Award (Magnum Foundation). She was one of the keynote speaker in International Media Summit 2020 (IIT BOMBAY).
Ranita completed a Master’s degree in Environmental Science from Asutosh College (Kolkata). She has also gained advanced knowledge in narrative photography from New Directions by Sohrab Hura (Magnum photos Photographer), and National Geographic Photo Camp (Kolkata)2018. In 2019, she attended the 7th annual New York Portfolio Review organized by The New York Times in New York..