If you are a professional in an emerging industry, like gaming, data science, cloud computing, digital marketing etc., that has promising career opportunities, this is your chance to be featured in #CareerKiPaathshaala. Fill up this form today!
India In Love by Ira Trivedi is a highly readable exploration of love, marriage and sexuality – and how they are changing - in modern India.
India In Love by Ira Trivedi is a highly readable exploration of love, marriage and sexuality – and how they are changing – in modern India.
Pimps, prostitutes, open marriages, sex toys, expensive lahengas costing a crore, somewhere even love – these are all factors relating to love and sexuality in 21st century India. In India in Love, Ira Trivedi sets out to explore the new Indian sexual revolution – because she has no doubt that India is in the middle of one. Young people everywhere are exploring their sexuality and coming into conflict with the older generation which believed in the virtues of Sita and Ram. While the older generation is again in conflict with Vatsayana’s Kama Sutra which states explicitly that women have a right to sexual pleasure in their marriage.
Armed with her boyfriend Vinayak, who acts as escort when she goes to a sex toys market or when she is talking to ‘escorts’ at a hotel, Trivedi interviews a vast cross section of people and in some cases goes to incredible lengths to get her own way – as when she takes a ride on a shaky Ferris wheel with Morsin, the pimp who has agreed to introduce her to his girls. The Ferris wheel creaks and shakes, Morsin jumps out and a dizzy Trivedi throws up all over her shoes.
India in Love is at its best in the personal bits, when a nervous girl ventures into very unfamiliar territory and her hesitation comes through. Trivedi finds a toddler with a teddy bear in a brothel in the notorious GB Road and ends up giving her last hundred rupee note to the child. The book’s timeframe covers the ancient past and immediate present – the watershed being the Nirbhaya episode which Trivedi says showcases not the strength, but the weakness of Indian men who feel themselves threatened by successful women.
India’s women, in fact, are the ones who are changing and changing faster than Indian men are. Women today are demanding their rights and coming up against stumbling blocks like khap panchayats who feel that jeans and mobile phones in feminine hands are a threat to traditional values. On the other hand, among the matriarchal Khasis, women have their own set of blues as they try to run households against the will of alcoholic husbands.
There is a general theory that sexual freedom is the result of Westernisation but this, Trivedi points out, is a misconception given the existence of the Konarak and Khajuraho temples and the tales of Radha-Krishna or Shiva-Parvati. She also cites the ghotuls of the Muria tribe of Bastar which are a kind of sexual laboratory where young boys and girls experiment with sex under given rules. The Murias she writes, have no incidents of rape or abuse, proving that the experiment works.
Trivedi backs her interviews with statistics and facts. She also points out that there is no Hindi word for ‘divorce’ but given the fast spiralling divorce rates in urban India, she has no doubt that a word will be coined sometime in the near future. Despite everything that she sees, she remains a staunch believer in love – an attempt to go through an arranged marriage type meeting leaves her thinking that it was more pressure on the heart than she had ever imagined. In the end, single though she is, she is grateful for the loyal presence of Vinayak, without whom much of the book would not have been possible.
Publishers: Aleph Books
Like Women’s Web and want to help us keep it awesome? Use our affiliate links below if you’d like to get a copy of Ira Trivedi’s India In Love.
Women’s Web gets a small share of every purchase you make through these links, and every little helps us continue bringing you the reads you love!
At Amazon India
At Amazon US
Women's Web is a vibrant community for Indian women, an authentic space for us to be ourselves and talk about all things that matter to us. Follow us via the read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
Stay updated with our Weekly Newsletter or Daily Summary - or both!
Shows like Indian Matchmaking only further the argument that women must adhere to social norms without being allowed to follow their hearts.
When Netflix announced that Indian Matchmaking (2020-present) would be renewed for a second season, many of us hoped for the makers of the show to take all the criticism they faced seriously. That is definitely not the case because the show still continues to celebrate regressive patriarchal values.
Here are a few of the gendered notions that the show propagates.
A mediocre man can give himself a 9.5/10 and call himself ‘the world’s most eligible bachelor’, but an independent and successful woman must be happy with receiving just 60-70% of what she feels she deserves.
You do not have to be perfect. There’s no perfect daughter, perfect employee, perfect wife, or perfect mother. These are just labels created by society, for their convenience.
So here you are, just out of engineering college, having no clue why you pursued Electronics Engineering. Yes, I know, like many others your age, you too were persuaded by your parents to opt for engineering because it supposedly gets you a lucrative job.
Believe me, however strange this might sound, you’ll soon come to realize that a high paying job need not always make you happy. And there are a myriad courses and career options out there, you should definitely consider something that’ll make you look forward to go to work every day.