Comics Newsletter

Back This Project: A Menstrual Hygiene Comic for Girls in Rural India

Deepali Agarwal

Staff Writer

Deepali Agarwal has a Master’s in literary linguistics, which means that every person she’s ever known has, at some point, asked her to ‘edit a thing’ for them-- ‘just see if it reads okay?’ She doesn’t mind, because she believes that the world can be fixed one oxford comma at a time. Deepali lives in Delhi, the capital of India, where cows are sacred, but authors and poets exist and write brilliant things. She works as an editor with OUP India’s School ELT division, where she moves apostrophes, looks up pictures of cats, and talks about children’s books for eight hours. The rest of her day is spent reading, thinking about Parks and Recreation, and wondering if there exist jobs for English majors that pay more than peanuts. Twitter: @DeepaliAgarwal_

In an action item all the way from India for all of you in the Book Riot community to support, fund a 100-page comic promoting and educating girls in rural India about menstrual hygiene and social norms.

Ariana Abadian-Heifetz, in association with the Delhi-based feminist publisher, Zubaan Books, is raising funds to help create, illustrate, and publish this comic, Spreading Your Wings, to help girls who are eager to learn about their bodies but are held back due to conservative societal norms. Poor menstrual hygiene in rural areas in India accounts for long-term health problems as well as an increase school drop-out rates.

“If girls internalize that they are inherently impure, then they’re set up for a life of devaluing their bodies,” says Ariana. “We strive to not just equip girls with accurate and relatable information, but to help them reframe the very way that they see their bodies, to transform the shame they feel into pride.”

Below is a sample of the amazing artwork that will be part of this comic.

For more sample pages, and to donate or share information about the project, visit this indiegogo page.

For more details about the project or to pre-order the comic, visit the official page for the comic.