Gender in South Asia Essay

These two contradictory remarks are about adult females – the first 1 is the stiff pronouncement which is still traveling on in our society and it had ever been a effect from the clip of Mahabharat to the present twenty-four hours that adult females do non hold the power to be an independent human being. And in the 2nd remark a adult female wants to take her life to her ain agreement by rebuting the patriarchal domination. She wants to caste a rebellion against the `Patriarchal hegemony` which creates a boundary over female freedom.

It seems as if she wants to disown the above-named patriarchal pronouncement. These are two subjects which I want to concentrate in my term paper which exists boulder clay now in our society of South-Asia in general and Bangladesh in peculiar. I want to demo how South- Asiatic adult females face patriarchal subjugation and how they have started to take her life to their ain agreement. I want to set up these facts through Selina Hossain’s two short narratives – Motijan’s Daughters and The universe of Love and Labour.

I choose Bangladesh among so many South- Asiatic states because the narratives from Bangladesh besides contributed to our experience of retrieving the scattered and disjointed organic structure of Bengali women’s composing. we are ashamed to admit this but the fact remains that we had been mostly nescient of the highly powerful organic structure of women’s composing from our neighbouring state despite our shared heritage of linguistic communication and civilization. The distinguishable characteristics of the above-named texts. both in footings of content and intervention. convey out the political. spiritual nd civilization specifities that inform women’s composing from Bangladesh.

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In these two narratives the scene is rural and the adult females. who have the power to destabilise the position quo of the sexse. map within small town community. The intent behind this rural scene. harmonizing to me. is lied in the fact that urbanisation is a reasonably recent phenomenon at that place. And the authors are possessing intimate links with their native small towns. And I choose – Selina Hossain because she is one of the most of import adult females authors of Bangladesh.

Her deep preceptions of nature and human mind have made her Hagiographas unique and absorbing. She in her Hagiographas depict the function of a adult female in the societal and cultural motion of her state. She points to the challenges faced by adult females. to the determinations taken by adult females in societal and political calls. Now I want to demo how two above-named subjects function through Selina Hossain’s two narratives. In Selina Hossain’s Motijan’s Daughters. the cardinal character Motijan under goes a lugubrious matrimonial life because of the malignity and ill-treatment of her mother-in-law Gulnur and hubby Abul.

She is physically and mentally anguished and she looses her individuality both as a `female` and `feminine` . ( 1 ) She looses the really `She` in her. She is blamed as `Sterile` adult female. All her desire of going female parent is shattered by her hubby Abul as he has an illegal relationship with Rasui. So he does non care for Motijan. She is continually tortured by her mother-in-law as her male parent is unable to pay the promised `dowry` . This `dowry` system is a affecting phenomenon in our society for which many adult females have to confront enormous anguish before and after their matrimony.

Rabindranath Tagore has shown us how Nirupama. in his narrative Dena Paona had to confront a fatal decease as her male parent was unable to give the promised `dowry` . But here. Selina Hossain deviates from Tagore. Her character Motijan has transformed herself from a incapacitated animal incapable of even the slightest protest to a adult female who can take the adult male she desires and non merely set up with her hubby who abuses and ignores her. She proves her birthrate by doing an extra-marital relationship with Lokman and like an `Angry immature woman` chooses her ain life to her ain agreement.

She wants to state what Benares in Vijay Tendulkar’s Silence! The Court Is In Sessoon. wanted to state –“ My life is my ain …… I will make ……what I like “ or she wants to make what the duchess of Malfi had done in webster’s The Duchess of Malfi. Motijan has fulfilled her desire by traversing ` Strategic Essecentialism ` ( 2 ) . Kunti in Mahabharat was non able to do public about her illicit relationship and about her boy Karna but Motijan is able to make that. Motijan boldly makes public about her adulterous matter by taking two girls in her manus.

Consequently to Lacan – every desire is a misrecognition. In the instance of Motijan. her desire is `non feminine` because she negates her `feminine` individuality of `wife` or` Sati` to go a female parent. She chooses Lokman non because she loves her. she makes a relation with him merely to come out from the incrimination of sterility given by her mother-in-law Gulnur. Thus. Motijan’s desire for Lokman is finally misrecognised. She takes her desire for Lokman as a `weapon of rebellion` by which she negates her `feminine` individuality of married woman and builds her – female’ individuality by giving birth of two female kids.

Jahanara Imam’s The Weapon depicts non simply the injury of a adult female who is raped viciously but the specifies of her agony get a new political significance as chhabiran resists the violent take-over of the district of her organic structure and land by Pakistani forces. As chhabiran uses her desire as a `weapon` like wise Motijan besides takes her desire as a `weapon` to arise against her mother-in-law. Another of import subject in this narrative is the development of adult females by adult females. Gulnur is like the traditional mother-in-law of our society who maintains her tradition by tormenting her daughter-in-law.

Inspite of being a adult females she continually maltreats Motijan. As the mother-in-laws are besides tortured by their mother-in-laws. so they carry on this anguish as if it is a `legacy` to them. But they really gain development non any advantage. But when they use it. it becomes `negative legacy` . Gulnur is making the same. Gulnur has non judged her ego as a `woman` . She has been influenced by the conventional tradition of our society and has judged herself as a tool of `oppression` . Another of import subject is about the birth of female kid.

In Aitereya Brahaman. 6/3/7/13 [ from Taslima Nasreen’s Selected Columns ] it is stated that the birth of a girl was considered a expletive. Therefore it is imperative that a pregnant adult female should execute so that her kid may be a male. This is the construct of Vedic age and it is still now really dominant and inactive codification in our society. And in this narrative same thing happens with Motijan after giving birth of two female kids. Gulnur. her mother-in-law wants to drive out her from the house by claiming that household line will non be saved by female kids.

But Motijan. like a `new woman` retaliates over Gulnur by rise uping the kids with extreme attention and pride. Her pride is equal to the heroine Hester Pryne in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter who feels proud of her girl Pearl. And her choler is equal to Jimmy Porter of Osborne’s Look Back in Anger. In Brihadaranyak Upanishad [ from Taslima Nasree’s Selected Coloumns ] it is declared that married woman must walk behind her hubby and The Satpath Brahamana directs adult females to follow the hubby but Motijan’s husband Abul who is non worthy of a hubby even non worthy of a human being. so there is no inquiry to follow her.

Besides. his anguish and his smoke of `bidi` maintain Motijan in a Claustrophobic state of affairs. Abul does non make the least responsibility of a hubby. That is why she does non see him even as a member against which she can put a rebellion. Besides. why ever adult females should follow Men? This is wholly a power drama patriarchate. And harmonizing to me. every Motijan should disobey every Abul similar hubby as they are non worthy of being a hubby. One of the equivalent word of adult female is `bharjya` ; one who is borne. These is a similarity in beginning between the words `bharjya` – `bhirtya` – a married woman and a retainer.

Motijan is treated like `bhirtya – slave ` in her household non as a true married woman. The stoping of the narrative is important because although the narrative ends. the battle of Motijan does non stop. It is merely the beginning of her battle where she will hold to confront more complexness from Patriarchal society. She has brought two new `Motijan` whom she will hold to do ready to fight against subsequently Abuls and Gulnur’s. Through the stoping of the narrative Selina Hossain wants to state that the rebellion which Motijan has started is non the rebellion of Motijan merely but the rebellion of every adult females of our South- Asiatic society in general and Bangladesh in peculiar.

It is the rebellion of those adult females who are the victims of such Patriarchal and matriarchal subjugations. And the battle which Motijan has started is unending. there is much left to derive her proper right and freedom. Likewise. adult females of South-Asia will hold to fight more to get their right and true freedom. Selina Hossain’s another narrative The universe of Love and Labour shows that Amzad Mia. Fulbanu’s male parent wants to give matrimony of Fulbanu to Kasem Khan who has already two married womans. for the greed of land.

In malice of being a male parent he considers her girl as an component of `exchangeable commodity` . This is non the present construct of our society. In Mahabharat we see that Arjun told Kunti. after conveying Draupadi by get marrieding her that he has brought a ` thing ` which he wants to give her female parent. So. since the yearss of Mahabharat adult females are treated as an `object` non as a human being. Taslima Nasreen in her Selected Columns writes “Milk. curdles. eggs and coconuts putrefaction. so does a woman” . Therefore. we see that society applies the term to a adult female as if she is an object.

Taslima Nasreen in her Selected Columns once more shows that Samartha Sabdokosh which is a fantastic add-on to the Bengali linguistic communication and literature. uses equivalent word for a `Man` – `Purushmanush` . `Manab` . `Manush` etc while for adult females equivalent words are `Stri` . `Meye` . `Ramani` etc. The legion equivalent word for adult female nevertheless do non advert `Manush` which merely means `Human` . But Fulbanu stops her father’s Conspiracy in order to learn him a lesson that she is besides a human being and her desire should besides be valued.

She marries Kasem Khan in secret without giving any information to her male parent and her household so that her male parent can non acquire the belongings offered by Kasem Khan. On the other manus she wants to learn a lesson to Kasem Khan besides. Kasem is a representative of neo-colonialism. ( 3 ) [ In Neo-Colonialist construct one individual thinks himself to be superior without believing what others think about him ] as he marries many adult females merely to carry through his lecherousness without caring any organic structure. He gives incorrect impression of his practising Polygamy that as he has no kids so to salvage the household line he wants to get married Fulbanu.

We find that it is non a recent phenomenon. In Aitereya Brahmana [ from Taslima Nasreen’s Selected Columns ] it is stated that a adult female can non get married more than one time. Even if a adult male has many married womans. one hubby is adequate for a adult female. Actually there is a medical ground behind this polygamy and to turn out this affair I want to mention Taslima Nasreen’s position. who in her Selected Columns tells that between the age of 50 and seventy many work forces suffer from an expansion of Prostate Gland. This expansion of the secretory organ leads to an addition in sexual desire. though the terminal is likely to be lasting powerlessness.

These old work forces. because of an hypertrophied secretory organ. are all of a sudden fired with inordinate sexual impulse and long to acquire them selves married womans. Many attempt to stating these work forces need a comrade in their old age. They prefer to get married adolescent miss instead than old adult female. The instance of Kasem Khan is besides the same. Kasem Khan besides reminds the illustration of Prophet Mohammed. But Fulbanu Shatters his dream of basking her and besides proves that the two married womans do non endure from sterility. The true fact is that Kasem Khan Is impotent and for that he has no kids.

The Aitereya Brahmana gives [ from Taslima Nasreen’s Selected Columns ] unreserved congratulations to a adult female who ne’er Contradicts their hubby. The two married womans before Fulbanu blindly accept this construct. They neither refutes Kasem Khan nor seek to detect the existent truth behind their sterility. But Fulbanu. like a `new woman` perverts from that inexpensive accepted norm of blindly having patriarchal hegemony. She additions her freedom by rebuting that hegemony and hierarchy created by her male parent and Kasem Khan. I hope. she creates an illustration of freedom which will go an docket to the misss who are the victims of such subjugation.

At the terminal of the narrative without caring anybody and without having any `Talaq` or `Divorce` she merely starts a new journey to an unknown way. She does non cognize what destiny will expecting her. But she frees her ego from the bondage of patriarchal hegemony and now she chooses a life of free bird. She wants to happen her ain topographic point to populate in Virginia woolf’s celebrated room of one’s ain ‘ where any bondage is prohibited. She wants to go the kept woman of her ain desire. Thus the two heroines of Selina Hossain’s through their tragic terminal ( as they both do non leade a normal happy lives ) prove the pronouncement “ Every calamity is a narrative of survival “ .

They both negate the traditional gender functions which cast work forces as rational. strong. protective etc. while adult females are emotional. weak. submissive. They prove that gender is a cultural building. non a biological one. Work force think themselves superior that is why they are superior [ Benedict Anderson’s position ] ( 4 ) . Actually they want to turn out that no 1 is superior from the first yearss. Women besides know how to construct equality by interrupting high quality. And through these narratives Selina Hossain proves herself as a feminist author.

Her characters are the representatives of the modern-day destinies of South-Asian adult females. Her private intent has therefore become a public feminine issue. She prefers to project her rebellion against the Patriarchal subjugation non by `Sword` but by `Pen` and I hope. she is really much successful in this fact. Virgin Woolf in her narrative of Judith lamented “ For who shall mensurate the heat and force of a poet’s bosom when caught and tangled in a woman’s organic structure? ” . But I hope Selina Hossain has no ground to plaint because she has created Hagiographas which is wholly free from male influence.

And her authorship may be treated under Gynocentricism ( 5 ) [ Elaine Showalter ; s Concept ] as she in three stages ( feminine. women’s rightist and female ) proves that she remains a just soft adult female through her Hagiographas. Therefore. through my term paper I want to state that the adult females of South-Asia partially achieved their success of independency. But if there is to be a true female independency excessively. much remains to be done. But the battle which has started by Motijan. Fulbanu and Selina Hossain herself is a great accomplishment. Their battle is like a `torch` whose visible radiation will demo way for the true right and freedom for adult females.


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