Sunday, August 9, 2009

Women really or rarely empowered?

Envisioning dreams in a conservative society sure needs guts. The 21st century however has experienced change in its societal domain. Gender studies, women empowerment and achieving a racial equilibrium have for long looked good in the dictionary, law journals and the university curriculum. These issues have also been voiced and opinionated for years. Amidst all the loud voices, feature presentations, social and international agendas, there are questions that still remain unanswered. In spite of the changing face of urban women, rural regions and conservatism is still a parasite. It is a shallow and pedantic hole that is each day digging the grave for the idea of change. If we are living in a technologically advance and modern society where women are now considered equal to men and where independence meets interdependence, then why do women still feel emotionally abandoned? Moreover, why do still dreams shatter? why isn’t the right to expression fundamental and most importantly why isn’t freedom still free of cost?

Writing about social issues is certainly not my profession but a predisposition. As a little girl, I was taught that womanhood is a gift of god as we have an innate nature to nurture, the perseverance to serve and the power to deliver. I have faint memories of my childhood where women were compared to Goddess Shakti or Durga (The giver of power in Hindu Mythology). I wonder if mythology has anything to do with our social and emotional cravings or is it just a superficial answer to the soul. I wish mythology could mitigate our pain, then we women wouldn’t still suffocate in a split society trying to keep up with religious pressures, and minority faiths or even bear male chauvinism. Wide angle’s documentary on Angelina Duah Fares on PBS perhaps is the root to my burgeoning questions. The story of this young aspiring woman narrates the tales of refined atrocities on women even in this 21st century world.

Further to the above, hailing from a country where women have longed for social and economic independence, I truly empathize with Duah Fares. In times where the world is defined as a single global entity, it is pathetic and emotionally averse to see the plight of women in some regions of the world. Like Angelina Duah Fares there are several other unknown names or faces across the world who still are victims of constant suppression and resentment. It is just that some stories are told while, as others remain half written. This subject of equality and empowerment is indeed debatable. It is important to analyze if the women of 21st century are really empowered or rarely empowered? Well for starters, there are numerous examples of great women achievers whose talents have been realized and recognized. This facet is like a sunshine with women of substance like Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Hallee Berry, or even the most recent achievers like supreme court justice Soniya Sotomayor and Dr. Sangeeta Bhatia, a pioneer in artificial liver invention. These women have truly exemplified thought provoking change and the need to mentor young minds. Needless to say, from scratch to sassy, these women have soared high in a so-called man’s world. This however seems like a mirage when young girls like Duah fares are forced to cease their aspirations. This means that there still exists a huge nascent gap, which needs to be filled with moral dignity and humanity.

Moreover, If all women are born equal and are capable to compete, then why does physical abuse and sexual harassment still exists? Cases such as Duah Fares may give in or give away to religious verdicts, for now but not for long. It certainly seems like a stop –gap and not a full stop. To conclude, as President Obama said in his inaugural speech, “we need to get up and dust ourselves”. In my view, however, this dust needs to transcend economics and politics and touch social issues of liberty and humanity at large. We all need to dust our minds first if we really are committed to enforcing such change in its total domain including the hue and cry of the women force.

Copyright (c) 2009-Till Date Dharbarkha.blogspot
Photo courtesy: Corbis Images

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