What comes to your mind, if I asked you about boys and girls? Some of us will say, equality. Even the young ones are more aware of these issues than they were some years ago. Things are changing slowly but surely that’s a positive sign, so let’s turn to Feminism. Lot of us have all kinds of confusions, misinterpretations of what feminism is all about. Is Feminism against the institution of marriage? Is Feminism anti-male? Is Feminism about angry women with rough and shouting slogans or is it an alien concept that doesn’t have relevance in our country?
Actually, Feminism is a very liberating idea it is asking equality. Equality between men and women, equality of rights and entitlements, equality in our gender roles inside the house and outside the house. Feminists are asking for equality of all men and women across all social divisions, racial divisions. So in short, Feminism is asking for just and equitable society which will encompass every single person.
Let us go to what a very wise French intellectual feminist wrote,
” One is not born a Woman , but rather becomes one”
What is the implication of this very celebrated statement of hers? Basically, it means that women and men are born equal but society makes us in equal we are born with different genitals . But that makes us male and female, it is process of socialization that will become men and women. The whole socialization process involves the construction of masculinity and construction of feminity. We have to think innovatively of changing the way we see men and women and expect them to grow up in a more healthy way in which it is possible.
Next point i would like to say is gender roles inside and outside home. Because a woman bears a child why should she have the prime responsibility of nurturing and caring for the children? Let’s repeat gender roles, so that we become a more just society. But patriarchy is very afraid. Patriarchy, which is the power system that controls people is afraid if you questions. People make culture , culture doesn’t make us. So, societies keep changing and customs, rituals keep changing however we find that there are certain rituals and customs which women in India still continue to observe. Actually those customs are demeaning to the status of women.
Feminism is really universal and nothing alien about it, the beauty of feminism is that , it is not one. Feminism is not trying to take from men but just trying to raise the same level as what men have. There are many feminisms, its culture specific, it’s born in a social cultural context. As boys you can listen to what women have to say, dialogue with them, put yourselves in their positions and look at the world. That way you will become sensitive men and join hands with the women in this equality. We are not wanting to take control of the world , men need not be threatened that we are anti-men but we want you as partners in this trouble for justice.
Categories: Social Issues