Sarojini Sahoo is an Indian academician, writer and feminist. She was born on 4th January 1956 in Dhenkanal in Odisha. She is an associate editor of the English magazine Indian AGE and a columnist at the English daily The New Indian Express. Sarojini was born to Nalini Devi and Ishwar Chandra Sahoo.
She is the wife of the veteran writer Jagdish Mohanty with whom she has a daughter named Sambedana and a son named Anubhav. Sarojini earned a Bachelor of Law, and a Master of Arts and Ph.D. in Oriya Literature from the Utkal University. She teaches at a Degree college of Belpahar, Jharsuguda, Orissa. Sarojini’s works deal with the subject of feminism, sexuality and patriarchy. She rejects the patriarchal limits placed by the society on women’s sexual expression and identifies liberation of women’s sexual rights as the true motivation behind women’s movement.
She is often identified as Simone De Beauvoir of India, even though she refutes the French feminist author’s The Other Theory. In 2005, Sarojini published her Odia novel Gambhiri Ghara which became a bestseller for its feminist outlook and sexual frankness. The novel was republished in English as The Dark Abode in 2008 and as Irunda Koodaram in Malayalam. The novel was one of the few to be republished in Bangladesh in Bengali Mithya Gerosthali in 2007. Her 2007 Odia novel Pakshibasa was translated in Hindi in India and Bengali in Bangladesh under the same title.
Her other Odia novels include Upanibesh in 1998, Pratibandi in 1999, Swapna Khojali Mane in 2000, Maharajatra in 2001 and Asamajik in 2008. In 2006, Sarojin published a collection of her short series in the book Sarojini Sahoo Stories which created debate and controversy with stories like Rape and a lesbian love story Behind The Scenes. Her other anthologies include Srujani Sarojini in 2008, Dukha Apramita in 2006, Deshanthari in 1999, Tarali Jauthiba Durga in 1995, Chowkath in 1994, Amrutara Pratikshare in 1992, Nija Gahirare Nije in 1989 and Sukhara Muhanmuhin in 1981.
In 2010, she published a collection of her essays under the title Sensible Sexuality, where she explores the concept of Eastern Feminism while emphasizing that feminism liberates both men and women from the patriarchal norms of the society that force men to be machismo and women to be subservient. India’s national television channel Delhi Doordarshan featured her life story in the special television serial Literary Postcard. Sarojini has won many awards including the Jhankar Award 1992, the Odisha Sahitya Academy Award 1993, the Bhubhaneshwar Book Fair Award 1993, the Prjatantra Award 1981 and 1993, and the Ladli Media Award 2011. Kolkata’s English magazine Kindle listed her among the 25 Exceptional Women Of India.