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Have We Realized Feminism In India

Posted: August 31, 2020

When will the feminist belief of “equality” trickle down into the Indian households.

During this lock-down, a question cropped up into my mind and it kept recurring to me again and again. Where does India stand in Feminism? We had our first woman Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi decades back in 1980, while countries like the USA which are developed than us had their first women presidential candidate in 2006.

House work is synonymous with women

Having said this, not even a week passes by without coming across a rape case in India. While the term “Feminism” is finding its place in all big pictures in recent times, isn’t it important to start it from our households. We all have been made to believe that the first thing every morning be it a Sunday or lock-down, is a woman who should serve a cup of coffee to all the family members.

When lock-down gave us all break from our routine life and take time to breathe and relax, it added more responsibility to every woman out there to make home a better place for the whole family who gathered at one place after years. Whenever a question is raised on why is that women should do it every single time, we have been convinced that every woman has to take care of household works irrespective of whether she chooses to work or be a homemaker.

Positive models onscreen

Influences play an important role in establishing or breaking these stereotypes. Undoubtedly, the media tops the list. In recent times, there has been a prodigious change in the portrayal of men and household works in media, especially in advertisements. In 2015, Ariel launched the “Share The Load” campaign and it beautifully talked about gender equality at home. It brought the man questioning “Is laundry only a woman’s job.”

Platinum once aired an ad in which for the first time, a man asked three months leave to take care of his new born child.

Few years back, Airtel’s advertisement portrayed new age man in a very inspirational, but this inspirational man wasn’t very received by the viewers. A man had work extra hours at office and his wife who is his boss cooks feast for him.

Yet, there is a huge gap between messaging and reach. Sadly, these inspirational men on big screen still didn’t make up their way to reality. It keeps me wondering when these inspirational men that I see on screen are going to be men in my country!

Unlock 3 has begun and slowly things are getting back to normal and I have started my work with a bundle of unanswered questions.

Isn’t it high time to normalize the fact that “Men can be homemaker and women can be a breadwinner.”

Reference- The above mentioned advertisements were referred in  Brand Equity of Economics Time.

Image source: Pexels

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