Women party activists — and the women in local politics who get them “out of the house”— are laying the groundwork for a rise in women’s political power despite the deeply contradictory and unfavorable conditions under which the majority of Indian women live. In every aspect of economic and political life, India remains far from gender parity. Nonetheless, women’s political participation and representation has increased over the past two to three decades. "Representation from Below" defines and grapples with the most perplexing paradox in Indian politics: women’s increasing political power. It argues that when women mobilize within parties, they change how parties organize power in societies, revealing the unseen force of women’s grassroots party activism as the answer. It illuminates the electoral logic that underpins women’s mobilization in grassroots activism and outlines how it promotes democracy and development. It also explains why India is still a long way from achieving political gender equality, with lessons for the rest of the world.