Feminism in India is a series of movements aimed at identifying, setting up and protecting equal political and economic rights for women in India. It is the pursuit of women’s rights in the Indian community. Like their feminist counterparts around the world, Indian feminists are seeking gender equality: the right to work on equal pay, the right to equal access to health and education, and equal political rights. Indian feminists have also fought against cultural-specific issues within India.
Feminist literature history has also had significant implications for the women’s movement as a whole. History of writing and women’s advocacy are also interlinked that support and feed each other. Understanding the patriarchy, the Women’s Organization, is based on the historical study of gender. The creation of strategies and perspectives of how women have traditionally come to hold their current position is an significant benefit.
This paper explores the historical context of the emergence of the Feminism and Women’s Movement in India and the history of gender in India. Not only in India, but all over the world, there has been a strong connexion between xenophobia and the women’s movement, encouraging and enriching each other. In the Indian sense, although the women’s movement is a much earlier development, the word feminism is new.
India requires feminism, since no man should be under the burden of being physically and emotionally stronger than a woman. It’s time for comments like “Mard ko dard nahi hota” and “Ladke rote nahi” to be sidelined and for men to volunteer to take up their home duties.
Whether working or not, a woman is viewed with disdain. A certain part of our culture thinks that if a woman is well educated and employed, financially supporting herself or her family, it is an offence. Another sophomaniac part of our community claims that being a housewife will make no contribution to the empowerment of women.
It’s time to realise that it’s not about feminism to make women powerful. Women are powerful now. It’s about improving the way this power is viewed by the world. No one should fear being referred to as a feminist because the forced gender roles liberate both men and women. Feminism should not be viewed as male aggression, because asking me for my rights would not deprive you of yours!
Many people claim that, because of Western culture, Indian women have got this notion of liberation and equality in their minds. This is an unfounded argument since feminism was around years before the golden sparrow land was conquered by Westerners. People just love to blame this “issue” on the West and then dismiss it with the notorious xenophobic stock phrase “this is against our culture.”
The idea that all people are equal regardless of their gender is feminism. Feminism uplifts people so that they perceive men and women equally. It’s not about insulting or declaring men inferior to them. It is not based on women having authority over men, but on the principle that women should have authority over themselves.
India is proud of creating great female warriors such as Rani Padmavati, Razia Sultana, and Rani Ahilyabai Holkar, but it is disheartening that women are active in the Indian defence forces. Fair participation by men and women in the military is only a far-fetched idea. This further reinforces the stereotype that physical strength and femininity, sentimentalism, mean masculinit
No major political or social rebellion against male dominance has been waged. Remarkably, in the bhakti movement , women defied all constraints and gained equality between men and women. They questioned the hegemony and revolted against the separation of castes. For example, Meera, Avvaiyar, and Karaikal Ammaiyar protested against patriarchy and subverted the hegemonic structures by remaining outside the marriage domain.
The Indian Constitution gives women the right to equality, independence, land, education, judicial redress and protection from exploitation. The state has also passed special legislation to protect the rights of women. In the social sector, these laws apply to different aspects of marriage (e.g., matrimonial selection, marriage age, plurality of spouses, divorce, shelter, dowry, restoration of matrimonial rights and remarriage), adoption of children and abortion.
Indian feminism appeared to portray the desires and concerns of upper-caste women rather than reflect the experiences of Indian women in general. By realising this fact, Indian feminism can challenge historically ingrained and varied [system of oppression] more effectively.
There was an overall lack of awareness, awareness, and comprehension of how our well-oiled patriarchal systems functioned within families, households, communities, communities , and society as a whole three and a half decades ago.Women have been overlooked indeed. But a counter-intuitive process of delving deep into human experiences and unpacking patriarchy through them was developed by this very ignorance. It gave birth to new viewpoints, a feminist consciousness, reflections on women’s active and reproductive positions, their functional and strategic needs, the effect of patriarchy on the individual and collective lives of women and their capacity to cope, counter, and overcome them.
It’s time for us to realise that feminism isn’t about making women powerful. Women are powerful now. It’s about improving the way this power is viewed by the world. No one should be ashamed of being referred to as a feminist because it frees both men and women from forced gender roles. Feminism should not be viewed as being hostile to men.
However, I will end with a lasting trust in the power of women who inevitably draw a new circle around the old one when they find themselves shut out of the circle of growth.
Pooja Bisht , FIMT – SCHOOL OF LAW ,GGSIPU