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Women And Patriarchy

Posted: March 26, 2021

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They cannot fight the system. So they find validation in joining the system. Upholding traditions which subjugate women. It’s their own way of sweet revenge.

Patriarchy is alive and kicking thanks to women who go out of their way to uphold it. Just this morning I saw a news report about a single woman being harassed by another woman in Mumbai. Doesn’t it happen all the time?

Both inside and outside the house women take lead in taunting, putting down and controlling other women. They do this in the name of upholding traditions. Traditions which are outdated and deeply patriarchal. Unwed women are advised, judged and mocked. Childless women are humiliated.

Why do women do this?

As the news reported, a middle-aged woman had made life miserable for another woman who is a single working professional. What made the middle-aged woman behave in the way she did? Is it jealousy? Or a deep regret about missed opportunities? Is it the thought that she may never achieve the success which the professional woman has achieved? Or is it about being trapped in an unhappy marriage and feeling envious of the single woman’s freedom?

It is obvious that women do have an insatiable need to put other women down. They do this because many times that is the only way for them to get ahead. These are women who can never raise their voice against men. They use all their might on other women. Such women are everywhere. Product of a deeply orthodox upbringing where they are made to feel ashamed of being a woman. They cannot fight the system. So they find validation in joining the system. Upholding traditions which subjugate women. It’s their own way of sweet revenge. They seek guilty pleasure in tormenting other women. By seeing other women suffer, they  justify the thought that suffering is the price to be paid for being born as a woman.

Is this behaviour encouraged by the entertainment industry?

Our entertainment media is full of stories where women take the lead in making others lives miserable. The daily soaps that are religiously viewed by the Indian ladies, revolve around similar female characters who master the art of derogatory communication. People relate to such stories. They are the kind of stories playing out around them on a day to day basis.

And the sad part is that such women suffer silently. Taunts by others  are seen as part and parcel of life. Women often ignore such people and move on.

But the good part is that someone has started calling them out. The brave single woman has gone out and lodged a complaint against her harasser. Hopefully, this is a new start. The MeToo movement has put men on the back foot. Complaints like these should put women irritants in the spot too. Someone has made a start. Others should diligently follow.

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