As part of FII’s new Meet the Team series, we are featuring former and current employees who have worked with or are working with us currently since the inception of FII. Feminism in India as a digital intersectional feminist media platform would not exist if not for these incredible individuals who have helped build this organisation to make what it is today.
Today, we’re chatting with Pragya Roy, who is the Content Editor at FII. If this was for a CV, she would have described herself as a “Feminist Activist and a Research Scholar.” But since, most days the content she engages with for her job requires formal, occupational skill sets of research and activism, for this piece, she would like to describe herself informally, “Hi. I am Pragya. I am a ramen enthusiast, a hummus mother, a postcard hoarder and a wannabe cat lady. I still prefer writing on my notebooks, rather than on my laptop, but my job demands me to do just the opposite. My favourite season is spring, and my alter ego is that of Mrs. Dalloway who said, ‘She would buy the flowers herself,’ in case no man ever buys me any!”
In office, Pragya is best known for her sunflowers, hummus and top level Instagram aesthetics. Let’s find out more about Pragya’s journey at FII!
FII: What do you like most about being a part of the FII family?
Pragya: I have found like-minded people, who respect differences in opinion and have the patience to engage with me, correct me, teach me and learn from what I have to say—all at the same time! And that, I feel, is key to having healthy workplace dynamics. I know tolerance is gendered and so is empathy, but I have always had the fortune to receive both abundantly from the FII family (not a workplace), especially when it comes to my technical skills, or rather let’s call them incompetences.
FII: What advice would you give someone joining the organisation?
Pragya: That discomfort and humility, both are a part of learning and growing and this job (I could only speak on behalf of mine) would always challenge you in very unexpected ways. It would require you to have difficult conversations, to take accountability of the content that you produce, to practice active self reflection and to be empathetic towards people, not only with respect to your job, but also very much in your immediate surroundings, including your workplace. No, especially your workplace.
FII: How would your colleagues describe you?
Pragya: Here’s quoting Queen Megan Thee Stallion,
“…a savage (yeah)
Classy-bougie (not really), ratchet (yeah)
Sassy, moody, nasty (hey, hey, yeah)
Acting stupid, what’s happening?”
FII: Which fictional character do you identify with and why?
Pragya: Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and this is on record (as in my author bio).
FII: What is something that you’re tired of hearing?
Pragya: “So, have you written your PhD proposal yet?“
“You are too much feminist.”
“Why are you being so emotional? You are stronger than that.”
FII: Which feminist movement do you feel particularly passionate about and why?
Pragya: I am inspired by the anti-establishment movements against capitalist and nation-state authorities which discriminate against its minorities and exploit their lives and labour.
FII: What makes FII a ‘feminist’ organisation?
Pragya: Its ability to amplify marginalised voices and concerns and not limit itself to, ‘women’s issues.’ I think for the same reason, we often get asked and told, that “How is (anything that isn’t conventionally a ‘women’s issue’) a feminist issue?“
It makes people uncomfortable to realise that the feminist movement is claiming more space in the world of activism and demands to opine on seemingly ‘non-feminist’ issues, whatever those maybe.
FII: What’s the most fun thing about your job?
Pragya: Internships. I learn so much from the interns, I work with them to produce good researched articles, explore my limitations and I absolutely love getting to know them and their ideas through their work. Also, for a person who isn’t tech savvy, the technical knowledge that I occasionally indulge in, blows my mind!
FII: Do you remember when and why you decided to work at a feminist organisation?
Pragya: This is my ideal life—to be able to work in a feminist organisation.
I do not think in the future, I will ever be able to be a part of such ideal workplace where I have an abundance of sensitivity and the most understanding of people to work with. I aspire to become an educator someday and hopefully in an established institution or University. However, from my personal experiences as a student, they have been really toxic, male-dominating spaces with very little sensitivity.
I never really decided to work at a feminist organisation, but it just happened to me and thank goodness that it did.
FII: If you had a talk show, which feminist icon would you call and what would you ask them?
Pragya: I would call Jane Austen’s spirit, and yes, this could become a little spooky talk-show, and maybe ask her to write me another old-English novel, taking cues from my life. Ooo! Wouldn’t that be ideal?
“Stop dreaming Pragya. Exit your world of fiction and get to work!“
FII thanks Pragya Roy for her timely and valuable contribution to the organisation. We are incredibly grateful to have her as a part of our team and appreciate her for her deeply insightful work. She can be followed on Twitter and Instagram.