Chapter 1
1. The Bharatiya Bar Girls Union emerged under the leadership of Varsha Kale,
a union activist and not a bar dancer herself, following a public rally in 2004 to
demonstrate against increasing state restrictions, police harassment, a greater
share of customer tips, and more. See Agnes, “State Control and Sexual Morality”;
Seshu, “Bar Girls Seek Rights.”
2. Bunsha, “Morality Check in Mumbai.”
3. Aretxaga, “The Sexual Games of the Body Politic”; Alexander, “Not Just (Any)
Body Can be a Citizen; Cooper, “An Engaged State; Duggan, “Queering the State.”
4. Mitchell argues that the state should be considered “not as an actual struc-
ture but as the powerful, apparently metaphysical effect of practices that make
such structures appear to exist” (“Society, Economy, and State Effect,” 89). In
“Limits of the State” he argues that the boundaries between state and society are
not self-evident but are discursively produced.
5. Even though the issue of dance bars did not play out only at the level of the
regional state and over the course involved numerous local, regional, national,
transnational actors and discourses of governance, its axis was tilted toward the
regional state.
6. Uberoi, “Introduction,” xvi.
7. For example, see John and Nair’s useful discussion in the introduction to A
Question of Silence?
8. The now considerable literature on nationalism and sexuality was inaugu-
rated by Mosse, Nationalism and Sexuality. Relevant here is also Stoler’s point in “Af-
fective States” that nation is analytically privileged over state.
9. During partition some seventy-five thousand women were raped or abducted
by men across religious-cultural lines, which was seen as a matter of national
shame, and the recovery of women, a matter of national honor. In a matter of
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