Thursday, November 26, 2009

How to carry on the family name

I am doing a class project on female foeticide and found this online.

From the website

AADHAR, an organisation in India dedicated to campaign against systemic violation of women’s rights, prepared this very disturbing press advertisement revealing the too common practice of female foeticide. The advertisement won a Gold Press Lion at Cannes 2008. In India, every year 1.1 million unborn baby girls die before they are born. Unfortunately the men who insist on these abortions have little idea of what really happens in the theatre.

Read point no. 7 ...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Explain Caste?

I was doing an assignment on Cultural Diversity with a friend today, and we repeatedly came across the word "caste" in relation to India. So he asked me what the word "Caste" meant since he had never heard it before.

I was flummoxed. How do you explain caste?
How does one condense several hundred years of history into a few pithy sentences? A hundred years of opression and injustice? I tried, of course. And gave him a crash course on the Hindu caste system.

I started with the four castes. How people were classified by birth (though it was hard to explain "untouchables"- he did not get the concept). Schedules castes and tribes. OBC's. How marriages were fixed only within castes. The caste honor system.
Reservations. Mandal Commision. Self-immolation. Supreme court rulings, the creamy layer, admissions in college. Caste Politics, Mayawati, Laloo Prasad Yadav.

He resolved never to ask me the meaning of any word he did not know.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A woman's ubiquitous Tool

What is the one tool that a woman almost always has? A woman from any country in the world? (and there is no need to get dirty here ;)
Any guesses?


This truth dawned on me a few days ago while talking to a friend from Tunisia. We were discussing eyebrow threading and she mentioned that she often uses a plucker. A couple of years ago, another of my friends from China was using a plucker. So do most Americans (though I don't have empirical evidence for this). So do most Indian women.

Image source:

Of course, this raises a lot of questions about how body hair is deemed ugly on women. I don't see men waxing their hair or shaving their legs. Apart from, of course, Shahrukh Khan. I love his waxed clean chest. Lovvvvvvve it!!!!! (I had to emphasize that).

That raises another question... how do you all like your men? Hairy or less hairy?