Discounting the war poems, a majority of the poetry is composed in women’s voices. But the sangam poems don’t often pass the third question of the Bechdel test: that is, women talking about something other than a man.

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When he realizes his mistake and returns to his wife Kaṇṇaki, now very poor.

Kaṇṇaki gives him one of her precious jewel anklets to sell for them to make ends meet.

So, on the surface they appear to pass the test and do express women’s innermost feelings oftentimes without mentioning a man; technically most pass the test. But didn’t you say earlier that many of these poems were composed by women themselves? It is exceptional to have such a large part of the corpus of any historical literature written by women!

But under the surface, the woman’s state is a result of a man’s behavior. One of the most prolific sangam poets of ancient times, the 9th most prolific, was a woman, Auviyār.

Can you contextualize a bit more of your discussion? I’m talking about texts composed in what is today Southern India, basically in the area between Kanchipuram today, pretty near Chennai (formerly Madras), and going down to the southern tip of the peninsula of the subcontinent on mostly the eastern coast.

This region also included what is today Kerala, ancient Cēra country, the southernmost part of India today.So, this test is in widespread use today for film critique, especially popular in European cinema boards, but also commonly used in the US, even by .It’s shocking that even today, with movies released in recent years, say, almost half of film releases fail this simple test!It was named after the sangams, the academies of writers and scholars that were associated together.Sangam literature very frequently features poems about women speaking to other women, and they were often even composed by women.Even today in the US, which is supposedly quite pro-women, we don’t see female characters with names who have some role in a film that isn’t as sexual interest or entertainment, or concerning the woman’s beautiful body, and so on.