Same Coin, Another

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Same Coin, Another Side

For me, equal rights would be achieved when we, the womenfolk, stop expecting men to vacate the seat for us, when that announcement in the metro limits itself to aged and the differently abled people, and when, in case of a fight, my son and the girl he has a tiff with, are both dealt with on common grounds.
26/02/2015 8:16 AM IST
Of Troublesome In-Laws And Bittersweet

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Of Troublesome In-Laws And Bittersweet Revenge

In India, a young bride is taught to make her husband's family her priority and to adjust to the customs of her new 'home'. I do genuinely believe that in-laws are not necessarily out to hurt their new daughters, but more often than not, women suffer silly issues with in-laws. Husbands are caught between their wives and parents, and usually literally beg their wives to please adjust!
07/04/2015 8:11 AM IST
Two Rotis And A Penis: The Poisonous Truth About Kitchen

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Two Rotis And A Penis: The Poisonous Truth About Kitchen Sexism

A few days ago I came across a picture on Facebook that compared rotis made by wives who had an arranged marriage versus those who had a love marriage. The arranged marriage wife's roti had the desired plumpness and looked quite delicious. It looked like something that comes out of my mom's kitchen. The love marriage roti, on the other hand, looked far from edible; burnt and flat. It was nothing like what most Indian men would expect when they sit down to dinner.
28/02/2016 8:24 AM IST
Measuring The Social Poverty Of

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Measuring The Social Poverty Of Women

When we think about poverty, we presume that the poor, whether men or women, boys or girls are equally poor. The truth is that women experience poverty differently and more acutely. Women (and girls) are naturally assigned to domestic roles and this limits their access to formal education and knowledge. This, along with deep-rooted social and family hierarchies, limits their access to material resources, but more importantly to social resources, i.e. participation in economic, political and social decision-making. I call the latter the social poverty of women.
08/03/2016 8:11 AM IST
Do Me A Favour, Don't Go Shopping This Women's

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Do Me A Favour, Don't Go Shopping This Women's Day

A woman is perceived to be the domestic goddess, the maker of all decisions in a household, or at least those concerning decor, draperies, detergent, dress and diet. So, with Women's Day this month, there'll be an onslaught of shopping offers, no doubt, even putting the tremendously successful Independence/Republic Day campaigns to shame. But is this why we celebrate Women's Day? For more shopping? Is this how we want to celebrate womanhood?
08/03/2016 8:11 AM IST
This Year's Top 3 Winners Of Women's Day

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This Year's Top 3 Winners Of Women's Day Stupidity

I've been trawling social media this year to find the most abhorrent things people do on Women's Day. Every year, it becomes about roses, discounts at spas, offers on oil and <em>atta</em>, and huge sales at clothes shops. Every year it becomes the exact thing it ran from--greedy capitalism co-opting a fiercely anti-establishment movement. So much so that almost everyone's forgotten why we are celebrating it. Here are this year's top three winners of Women's Day Stupidity.
09/03/2016 8:31 AM IST
Why Women Hate

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Why Women Hate Women

As women, we are constantly policing other women. If she puts on bold red lipstick, she's looking for attention. If she's wearing a sleeveless dress with unshaven arms, she's trying to make an unsightly feminist statement. If she doesn't smile often, she's too uptight. If she makes a good presentation, she's trying to make other women look dumb. All these are instances are examples of internalised misogyny which makes women despise one another for irrational reasons.
19/08/2015 8:00 AM IST
What The Hell Is In That South Indian

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What The Hell Is In That South Indian Name?

I recently read a story in the <em>New York Times</em> about married women increasingly choosing to keep their last name. A less well known, but highly annoying and frustrating dilemma is how some communities in South India compose the last name. A common practice is using a series of capitalised letters (initials). This seemingly random set of letters works much like GPS coordinates that identify an individual.
16/07/2015 8:09 AM IST
Why 'Bahubali' Is Not As Sexist As The Critics Seem To

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Why 'Bahubali' Is Not As Sexist As The Critics Seem To Think

Critics lambasted SS Rajamouli's magnum opus <em>Bahubali: The Beginning</em> for leaving no space for female characters to develop, and held it as an example to show how Telugu cinema is stuck in a medieval past. "Masculinity-porn", "sexist" and "testosterone-heavy epic" were some of the phrases used to describe the film. While I think deconstructing gendered representations in films is something to encourage, these readings are nowhere close to my experience of the <em>Bahubali</em>.
06/08/2015 8:19 AM IST
Torn Pages From My Harassment

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Torn Pages From My Harassment Diary

I have never felt as wordless as when I was trying to articulate my experiences of sexual harassment on the streets of India. When these incidents took place, all I wanted to do was to perhaps take a lesson from them and then move on, forget about them. They made me feel emotionally weak, helpless, as if freedom was out of my grasp. I could imagine others saying, "So what? After all, she was never raped."
01/06/2015 8:09 AM IST
'Caravan' Magazine's Apology For Not Putting A Woman On The Cover For 5 Years Is

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'Caravan' Magazine's Apology For Not Putting A Woman On The Cover For 5 Years Is Hogwash

<em>The Caravan</em> actually didn't have a woman on any of their covers ever. And don't presume that most covers had issue-based images. No, they mostly featured a personality. A male personality. Associate editor Supriya Nair makes a sad attempt at saving Caravan's face and renders a terrible apology for this gap... to say that in five years you couldn't find one woman figure worthy of the cover page, well that is just a dumb lie.
06/10/2015 8:10 AM IST
Celebrating Love On A Moonlit Night -- My Own

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Celebrating Love On A Moonlit Night -- My Own Way

I am someone who observes Karva Chauth out of choice. I don't do it for the longevity of my husband's life either. I instead pray for the longevity of the beautiful life that we have created together. I have never put henna on my hands nor have I dressed up like a bride on the day of the fast. I do not see the man through the sieve when the moon comes up. Looking him in the eye under a moonlit night is far more romantic.
30/10/2015 8:16 AM IST
Arranged Marriage Or Love, Does It Even

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Arranged Marriage Or Love, Does It Even Matter?

"Did you have a love marriage or an arranged one?" I am asked this question all the time. And every time my answer (arranged) seems to stun the other person into a loud, "No way! Who would have thought?" I cringe each time I get asked this. Because the fact of the matter is that the question itself--one that is blindly passed down generations like a banal legacy-- is increasingly losing its meaning and relevance.
21/03/2016 8:11 AM IST
To Suggest Women Should Calibrate Ambition Is Sexist And

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To Suggest Women Should Calibrate Ambition Is Sexist And Defeatist

I think men and women are different but I also believe that they both equally human and should be allowed the freedom to make their own choices and live their own paths without being encumbered by what society expects from them. As a feminist, I don't think men and women are the same but I do think they are equal as human beings and should be afforded the same chances and opportunities that equality offers.
17/08/2015 6:07 PM IST
Islamist Extremists Weren't the Only Killers Of My Friend Xulhaz

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Islamist Extremists Weren't the Only Killers Of My Friend Xulhaz Mannan

I had been trying to avoid it for hours last night but couldn't escape it any longer, as it was all over social media. "Xulhaz Mannan, 35, the editor at Bangladesh's first LGBT magazine <em>Roopbaan</em>, along with Tonoy Mahbub, a fellow activist, was hacked to death." Many news reports read like this and I was left wondering on how to process that piece of information. I went back to the countless Facebook conversations where Xulhaz and I had talked about our mutual struggles...
30/04/2016 8:19 AM IST
The Quiet Resilience Of Nepali Women

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The Quiet Resilience Of Nepali Women [Photoblog]

It is remarkable to witness how many women who did not receive proper education have understood that it is the only tool that can liberate their children from the life of oppression they have endured. Today, in many villages in Nepal, a mother plays a pivotal role in educating not only her sons but also her daughters.
15/07/2016 6:46 PM IST