Women’s representation in spaces of participation and power: A study of tribal and non-tribal women in local systems of governance in Orissa, India
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- Institutt for geografi 
This study investigates the real representation of women in two villages in Orissa, India. Through my own feminist lens I have brought in theory of spaces of participation and power and hence linked this to the concept of real participation. Women from three different ranges within the local social hierarchies have participated in this study by sharing their knowledge, and I have tried to connect their stories and knowledge to political geography by captivating how they are represented in local governance. Representation is an important concept throughout this study, and it concerns how people feel that their interests are being represented and listened to. The study reveals women’s constrains and enabling factors to participate in formal or public spaces of governance. The studied women show that they lack real access to the invited spaces of participation in their local villages and thus they lack access to real representation through public spaces. This study also investigates the links between different spaces of representation, and shows that real representation is vital in women’s lives. When in practice excluded from the local public spaces of governance, these women claim spaces of participation and power by creating their own spaces of representation in the counter-publics.