My Teen Son Asked Me ‘Is Marriage The Only Goal Of Women?’ On Studying This Celebrated Poem!

Every woman does not wish to be married, and she can have dreams that do not include matrimony. Why are such regressive poems still taught?

My 7th grade son was reading a poem called The Bangle Sellers by Sarojini Naidu. The poem harps on the notion that a woman dreams of her marriage, how each phase of her journey is towards marriage, as represented by the various colours of bangles. “This poem also describes how the bangles are attached with their emotions and these bangles also represent the transition of a girl from young to old.”

The poem starts by saying that a “maiden dreams of getting married.”

The blue and silver bangles represent her “freshness like the mountain dew.”

The red bangles are the woman who is “like a flower bud.”

The “buds that dream” represents the dreaming for marriage and the green bangles represent the “freshness of young women.”

Creating the wrong impression in the minds of children?

On studying this poem at school, my son asked – is the dream of a woman only to get married? What about her hobbies and aspirations? He asked me if my goal growing up was only to get married. He is stunned by the notions this poem speaks of, as he sees his mother working as a designer, content writer and a chef in addition to her family roles.

The next stanza describes the yellow bangles of the woman as she is getting married. “She needs to look brighter of all on her wedding day.” My son now asks me if I ashamed to be of dark skin colour? I have never been the one to try to appear ‘fairer’, or apply too much makeup. I tell him proudly how my mother never wanted me to be a white doll on my wedding day.

The next stanza describes the purple and grey bangles which shows how she stood by her husband through good and bad times, and how she raised her children. “The bangle seller also says that these bangles are perfect for those women who maintain their family with pride and worship the gods.”

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Why do we still have regressive ideas in curriculum, and teachers not setting the context?

My son now again questions is marriage the only goal of a woman. I explain to him that marriage is a bond between two people and how they cherish each other’s wishes and desires, but it is not the only dream of women.

As I explain to my son, I wonder why the ICSE board includes this poem in a curriculum for today’s generation.

Every woman does not wish to be married. Marriage and taking care of their husband is not the only goal in their life. They have their own careers. They are educated and skilled. They can multitask efficiently.

Also, a woman enjoys wearing bangles but that is for her pleasure and not because she wishes to be a perfect wife to her husband. What about the errors and trials she faces? What bangle will she wear then? What about wearing a bangle when she celebrates her achievements?

I wish for my readers to think and tell me if I am wrong in my thought process. A woman is sufficient and excellent by herself. The bangle colors adorn her and enhance her capabilities.

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About the Author

Anindita Nag

I love to write on women's issues. I strongly believe that every woman is capable of being more than just a homemaker. They are the leaders of our world. They can multi-task more read more...

50 Posts | 124,762 Views

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