Friday, December 08, 2006

Feminism ??

Two days back as I was discussing something with one of my friends, the topic popped up was feminism and he called me a feminist. I didn’t feel proud or ashamed but at the same time didn’t know how to react to it. It had started with as simple a question as whether after marriage ladies should change their surname or not. When the question was directly thrown at me as what would have I done, I answered in negative and after a few minutes of why’s and why not’s kind of arguments I was called a feminist. :))

A feminist? Am I or am I not? Being a feminist is bad or good? Just because I don’t want to part with my current name, have I become a feminist?

What is feminism after all? I do not know the correct meaning of it and how differently people can interpret it. As far as I know, in simple terms, it is a belief in equality of the sexes.

But then who does not believe in equality of sexes? Don’t you? This is 21st century and we better ought to make it true. So then, does that mean whoever believes in this equality of genders is a feminist ??

Well, if the meaning restricts only to this then I can gladly announce about my being a feminist which will also cover a whole lot of bigger world. But if this also means unnecessary protests on the roads, blowing out the issues to gain political advantage, unwanted intrusions and harassments to someone’s life with or without intentions, then sorry to say, I am NOT a feminist. I do agree, sometimes these measures are necessary as well, but not always.

Being a feminist, especially a female, does not mean doing exactly opposite of what you are supposed to do in your normal life.. without giving a thought to it.

By not changing my name or surname after my marriage will not make me rebellious as some people would have the opinion. Though I was given a number of ‘advantages’ for doing it, I just don’t think it is going to benefit me anyhow. It is just a matter of choice for me.

First, why do I need to change my name/surname when it belongs to me and I like it very much ?

Just because my mother changed her surname to my father’s or
that is the universal tradition or
that is what ladies are
NORMALLY expected to do after their marriage ??
And for so many other or's ?

Then I beg to differ, I want to be abnormal.

After all, it’s my life and it’s my name/ surname and I just do not want to part with it. What’s wrong if I want to keep it? In this free democratic world at least the decision to keep or change my name should reside with me and not with anybody else. Am I asking for the impossible if I say that ? My negative answer to my friend was in this very context. It’s another thing that I would like to get immersed myself in someone, I would love to lose myself in him but then it takes the romantic turn, a matter of heart not mind... hence not in this post. :)

When a child is born, he/she is given a name. And he has to keep it for at least some years whether he likes it or not, at least till the time he is grown enough to rethink and take his decision. But what about us females? Won’t we be allowed to do the same?

When I was seven years old, I wanted to adopt my mother’s maiden surname as my surname. At that age my reason was very simple and apt. The surname was short and I didn’t have to write more on all my notebooks, drawing sheets etc. In fact, I had even started using it and when my teachers came to know after 10-12 days, all were shocked. Them as well as me. I was not allowed to write my new surname and was told very coldly that it is my father’s surname what I must have. Within no time I was branded as undisciplined and intrepid child. No issues there as had I been a boy, same thing would have happened. But back then I had felt terribly bad.

And now after all these years when I have really started loving my name and don’t want to part with it, they all want me to change it ?

Anyways, for me, being feminist forms a bigger canvas than changing names. One doesn’t have to revolt each time he sees something wrong happening. There could be other ways of dealing with the situations. Not painting a very big picture here like raising all those issues and hold processions. I am not the right person to do that. What I always try to do on a very small scale is for satisfaction of my conscience. I’ll narrate two small incidents here. Probably they are irrelevant here but still... sometimes thoughts just flow.

As I said feminism means equality to me. Not only equality but care (support & upliftment automatically follow) for the weaker sex. Yes, I agree, we are THE weaker sex…not mentally but physically. Mentally we are much much more stronger and tougher than our counterparts. Come on, have a heart to admit it !

The first incident has happened many times with me with only faces and characters changing. Once during my college days I was traveling in a bus, was fortunate(??) enough to get a ladies seat. Besides me, there was a gentleman (was he a gentleman?) sitting at window seat. After sometime the bus was packed to its capacity, at next stop, a pregnant lady got into the bus and as luck would have it, seeing a male sitting on a ladies seat she made her way straight to us. The not so gentleman started looking out of the window as if he had not noticed anything. Nothing unusual. The lady asked him once, he didn’t respond. Nothing unusual. Without uttering a word I immediately got up and gave my seat to that lady. Nothing unusual again.

Had I been standing instead of that lady, I wouldn’t have asked the guy to give me the seat even after knowing very well that he was occupying a ladies seat. Yes, when I say I believe in equality of sexes, I mean it. If I consider myself to be equal to a man I should be able to travel like him... standing. The case of pregnant lady was different. She should have been offered the seat irrespective of where she was standing .. near a ladies seat or somewhere else. Tell me how many of us care to do that? How many of us stand and give our seats to the needy ones ? Not talking about the exceptions here.

Thousand of times I have seen men taking a general seat in bus with the quote “Here I am safe, ladies seat se to uthna padega”. Doesn’t that mean that if a needy comes near your seat... even if he happens to be an old man, you are going to do the same what that guy did ? And on top of that you gentlemen grumble over petty matters like ladies occupying a general seat !

I believe the reservations should always be for the needy and not for any gender or caste. (Don’t expect any post on reservations now ;) )

Second incident is around two years old. I was traveling by Rajdhani Express ..from Delhi to Mumbai. As always, I was traveling alone. I never ask anyone to drop me or pick me up. It’s not a question of arrogance but I have made myself capable of doing things on my own.

I had the lower berth in 2 tier AC and there was an old Gujju widow around 65 years old with the upper berth allotted to her !! All other passengers including the occupants of side berths were males, all between 22 to 40 years.
She was visiting from her one son in Delhi to another in Mumbai. When the train had started moving, general chat session started, she after sometime mentioned how difficult it would be for her to climb up and before she even completed her first sentence I had offered her my berth. No one, I repeat, no one from those educated, cultured four gentlemen of this generation, who till now were listening to her wanted to do that. It is such a shame for all of us.

Later I came to know that she had been asked by her Mumbai son to alight at Borivali station where the train stops only for 2 minutes. I was wondering how she’s going to make it with 13 pieces of luggage !! And what if her son was a bit late and didn’t turn up at the station. Again, she looked at me and like a fool (am I ??) I started moving her luggage near the door. No one from our so called superior sex offered any help. They had immediately made themselves busy by reading book or some other thing.
I was even prepared to get down at
Borivali in case her son doesn’t turn up. Fortunately I didn’t have to do that.

I sometimes (well, most of the times) wonder why this male community behaves like this. Why her son at Delhi didn’t make sure before the start of journey that she gets a lower berth? Why the Mumbai son asked her to get down at Borivali station knowing her age, her luggage and her traveling alone ? Why other people didn’t offer any help ? Why people always expect others to lend a helping hand?

It is always assumed that we, females are going to support you, come what may, for all your good or bad deeds so can’t we expect something in return when we are really helpless physically ? Don't you think we deserve a better treatment than this ??

When a help is needed, it is needed. Period.

Gentlemen, we, the weaker sex need your support, your help in the same manner as we support you all through your life for all your needs without you even asking for it.

Current song- Piya Baawree – Ajay Pohankar

46 comments:

Prashanth M said...

hmmm... thought provoking.. and let me tell you - all men are not like those above mentioned :p

And the train incident reminded me of my regular twice a month train journeys b/w Chennai and B'lore - I used to offer my lower berth to elderly people - almost every time I got a lower berth.

And speaking of offering help to others -- people tend to look at men a bit suspiciously if a help is volunteered. where as for women its not like that.

Once while coming home from Chennai, an elderly uncle was struggling to take out his baggage while getting down. I offered him help - he looked at me for few seconds as if studying me - and then handovered his luggage to me..

And discussions/debates - they don't have and end. Conclusion is aslo not that easy :)

Bendtherulz said...

Atta Girl for taking the bulls by horn.
However please do not be too harsh on the guys. I am sure not all of them are like as you mentioned. I think people are changing....especially the young ones...I have seen numerous times, people offering their seats to elderly person...( My mother travels and she has always been able to get lower births or assistance with her luggage...)

I believe in "fair exchange" and one has to take the initiative - if all of us can think in terms of how we would like our parents or loved ones to be treated - I am sure we will not think too much about helping - so you do a good deed and you get a good deed return .

Rahi baat name and surname ki -since you come across as a sensible girl...would you be considering a guy whose main interest will be on that point.
I would like to be connected to a person with heart rather names !!

Bendtherulz said...

I liked this post a lot...!

eternal thoughts said...

hmm..........

completely agree wid u. equality of sexes..... is a truly thought proviking issue. "behind every man there is a women" but is thaere always a man's hand behind every sucessful women? there are several examples to quote lets take the beauty of bollywood Rekha.....
and the losers like sallu bhai (samajh ne wale ko ishahra kafi hai)

Raman Gupta said...

Well a good article...but u seem 2 b more feminist than normals girls...anyway,but all guys r not like that...I feel guys help ppl in problem more than ladies...becuase females tend to secure themselves first b4 giving help...so many times they may jst turn their backs....guys give help or jst don't...they don't think that much...

Personally,I believe in helping the needy irrespective of gender,color,race etc...be it a old man,pregnant lady or anybody suffering....

changing surnames is purely personal & practical choice...suppose if u r waiting H1-B/visa and suddenly u have to change ur name due to marriage...then I think its not practical to change surname...

Cuckoo said...

Prashanth,
Welcome once again. Well, I never said all guys are like that. Read it again. :) There are always exceptions. And I have seen helping guys also. Don’t take it personally. It was a general perception about majority of people.
You yourself quoted the case of that elderly uncle…do you know why he thought for some seconds before taking your help? Because these things are not very common, people tend to look at you suspiciously. We have to make them common.

Thanks for sharing your experiences with me. It really helps in rethinking about our opinions.

BendTheRulz,
Oh oh, thanks so much for liking this post !! I knew somehow, you gonna like it. :P As I said to Prashanth, not all guys are like that. There are always two sides of a coin.
Yes, I agree, people are changing but we need to make it more frequent, more visible.

I would like to be connected to a person with heart rather names !!.. Wow !! I had taken the bulls by horn and you’ve hit the bull’s eyes !! Same here. :))

Thanks again for liking the post. Tahe dil se shukriya. :))

Eternal Thoughts,
Welcome to my blog. Hope you liked it. Yes, it’s a thought provoking issue…provoked me a bit more than expected !! Ha ha…

but is there always a man's hand behind every successful women?.. Spot on !

Thanks for your visit. Keep coming & keep commenting. :))

Raman,
Welcome to my blog. New blogger ? Ain’t you?

but u seem 2 b more feminist than normal girls..Well, as I said so, I don’t have any issues in being branded as feminist. :)) {*Conditions applied}

females tend to secure themselves first b4 giving help..It’s a human tendency.. Suppose the entire colony is on fire including your house, you’ll first save your house before lending any help to others.

I believe in helping the needy irrespective of gender,color,race etc… That’s what I said !! We have common views here. :D
changing surnames is purely personal & practical choice..On the dot !!

Cuckoo said...

Raman,
Thanks for your visit !! Keep coming.

Sigma said...

A very apt post, and very suited to our times. And quite a few questions that I have too raised with myself and others - I told you that we are similar in many ways :-)
There are so many things I want to say here. Have to come back and write more on it, hopefully over the weekend.
Weekend ... yippeee :-) I am just so happy that the week ended. finally. sigh.

Hazel Dream said...

Hmm you wana know why this word Feminish sucks ?? try to read it with a neutral perception. Yes I agree its the inherent anomaly in human nature to dominate and exploit the weaker individual . that weaker individual can be another man, woman , another Race, cast , religion .
Feminism evolved as a struggle to achieve equality and ended up as another excuse making shitty weep of jealous woman.
Yes we are equal and we have different quality , I admire your honest modesty to accept that you a physically weaker sex and we men are emotionally weaker sex .
We need each other .

The two incident u narrated were anomalies of human behavior and not a masculine trend . they were ignorant crude individual who hasn’t got a chance to understand life and its vanity . I can give you more incidents of women behaving shitty .

We shall always respect the individual without subjecting him or her to go through the scrutiny of generalization.

Cuckoo said...

Sigma,
Come, come again. Waiting for your inputs. Happy weekend !! :))

Hazel Dream,
Yes, you right. The weak person is always exploited, be it a woman or man and these are human trends practised more from masculine side. As I said, exceptions are always there.

We need each other.. You're spot on !!

Ketan said...

1. Defining feminism as 'seeing an equality in sexes' is entirely mileading. if we see equality in true sense, then this term should'nt be used at all.
2. Changing of surname after marriage is just a convenient thing to have a single surname for every member of a family. And when you have only 2 surnames to choose from, it should not be seen as a sign of gender bias, otherwise you end up seeing it as so, in either case. Usually, it is a good idea to follow a tradition to avoid confusion. Life should be simpler. Many girls use two surnames after there marriage, which, in my opinion is just inconvenient and a bit strange.
3. Biologically, in every species, males and females are different and in every species males and females have chosen the job they can do the best. Its only wise humans where we have not yet been able to make peace with this concept. Males think they are superior, when, they really are not. And Females think they should be doing everything that a male does(which itself is a recognition of the bias by females).

4. For example, a male truck driver or a rickshaw driver or a mechanic or a coal mine labour would be more effective then their female counterpart. And a female nurse, social worker, communicator, house wife would be more effective then their male counterpart.

5. The problem is, what females can do best, they(including males) underestimate it, most of the time because the reward is not monetory.

That was my take. However, this topic is irritatingly repeated infinite times in office, friends etc. discussions, I came across it after a long time.

cheers.

Fleiger said...

The words "feminism" and "feminist" can be used as good or bad words depending on context and the user's perspective. So, don't read too much in that is my advise. If a person asking for equal rights for women is feminist, I am one as well.

Secondly, if the choice is personal, I won't have any problems. You don't need to give reasons, as it is your choice. Just make sure it is not because you want to break tradition or because something you read/heard somewhere.

My personal thought about that issue is that the effort and time spent by the people in determining 'whether the name should be changed after marriage' or 'whether the man who opened the door for you is being chauvinist and reducing your worth as a person' can be profitably used in current generation for helping girls get education, and equal rights.

P.S. the last para was not about your post. It was my opinion. I didn't mean that you are wasting time writing this post and should be doing something else.

Great post as always... :)

Cuckoo said...

Ketan,
Defining feminism as 'seeing an equality in sexes' is entirely misleading… I would like to know your understanding on the definition.

Changing of surname after marriage is just a convenient thing to have a single surname for every member of a family... Convenience – I fully agree. When you say we have only 2 surnames to choose from, then why can’t we have the girl’s surname as the family surname in case that is more easy/simple to write, pronounce or read ?? Will you change your surname to your wife’s if your wife happens to have a simpler surname?? The answer is NO.. So, the choice of 2 surnames actually doesn’t exist. Anyways, as I said, this surname thing is a petty matter compared to bigger issues.

Life should be simpler.. I agree but not against someone’s wishes. I repeat, changing names and many other such issues should be a matter of personal choice.
Many girls use two surnames after there marriage, which, in my opinion is just inconvenient and a bit strange.. It’s their way to not to part with their surnames where they are not allowed to keep only their surnames, so in bargain they’re keeping both !!

I really wish I was working in your office, I didn’t have to waste my precious after-office hours to read and write blogs. :P

Cuckoo said...

Fleiger,
The words "feminism" and "feminist" can be used as good or bad words depending on context and the user's perspective.. Exactly !!

If a person asking for equal rights for women is feminist, I am one as well.. I know I know :)

can be profitably used in current generation for helping girls get education, and equal rights... Ditto !! When I said I don’t believe in holding unnecessary processions etc. , I meant this. Instead of cribbing & finding faults each time in the system (Faults are many, we all know and you & me can not change the whole society), we can concentrate on what we can do for the betterment without making another issue out of it. My two incidents convey the same message. :)

Changing name is a very small issue compared to what we can really focus on. It is something like a child asking to keep his favourite toy at the time of shifting house & we letting him have it so that we can pay attention to other major & imp. tasks. After all, we don’t want the child to throw tantrums and disturb in our main aim. For that child, having that toy is the most important thing in his life and he might help you in other jobs if you let him have that. :)
I hope you are getting me correctly.

I didn't mean that you are wasting time writing this post and should be doing something else.. Even if you mean it, I am not going to listen to you. ;) :P

Thanks. Tahe dil se shukriya. (Thanks from the bottom of my heart).

Ketan said...

Will you change your surname to your wife’s if your wife happens to have a simpler surname?? --As I said, its better to stick to a tradition to avoid confusion. If I start adapting my wife's surname who happens to belong to a different region of the country, I would have to keep explaining to everyone about the details, which i find inconvenient for me and others.

I believe, your name is not entirely a personal thing as that is the interface through which people and governments communicate to you.

What I said about feminism is also recognized by many women, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminism for further details.

I also wanted to emphasize that the very fact that women blah about feminism makes them recognize the fact they have been biased about. I would say, just go ahead and do what you want, who is going to stop you? but why this all hype?

At best, I would call it a fuss. No offence, but most professional women I have seen in my life are like that. At one hand they blah about equality and on the other hand they express their majboori because of the very fact that they are women.

OK, thats nuff for the day.

KT said...

nothing much left for me to say here.. already much is covered in the posts...

well I held feminism as a negative word... more because of the current connotations than the dictionary meaning.... but as pointed out depends on the meaning intended.... so if you really think feminism is about equality, you shouldn't take offence at being called a feminist!!

as for changing surnames.. its strictly case to case basis ... there is no more should change/shouldn't change... and I know a friend of mine who had to change her first name as well!!

and from the comments you would have realised that men do realise that they have a weak heart... and perhaps a strong exterior... (no one argued against it)

but somehow I feel that the two experiences were written in a way to express rants (although that is not unjustified at all) and one can explain it the other way as well....

Pyare Mohan said...

:-)Very thought provoking post. Firstly, it made me think about the word 'Feminism'
fem·i·nism // Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[fem-uh-niz-uhm] –noun
1. the doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men.
2. (sometimes initial capital letter) an organized movement for the attainment of such rights for women.
3. feminine character.

1. About the name - I believe everyone has the right to keep their names. Its a male ego of the past when the Kings wanted their 'kul' to be taken forward. Who cares if the kul gets over with this generation. Those days are far bygone. In Kerala, there is a sect, which has a matrilineal culture. The guy gets married and goes to the woman's house and the entire rights of the property remains on the woman's side... This is an age old custom that has been followed till the nuclear family system arrived!

2. About Feminism. I think it is a word that has been misused in all the wrong ways. As i described the dictionary meaning above, it is nothing to do with 'only' male atrocities and indignified behaviour. A feminist is a person who stands by the rights of a woman, wether the atrocities are done by a man or a woman... In many cases, there is many a times, a woman as a part of the crime that has been committed against them. The problem with Feminist and Feminism, is that it becomes a male bashing scenario. I do agree many of the crimes are committed by men, but to a feminist (the certain people i know) it becomes a general viewpoint!

3. About Help - I thing any human, man or woman should never cinge to help old people, remember we are all going to be old.

Pyare Mohan said...

oops typo errors...
3. About Help - I think any human, man or woman should never cringe to help old people, remember we are all going to be old.

SiD said...

Well, a variety of opinions here!!

I am with you on the surnames issue... one should be free to keep it or change it..
btw there is a community where the husband has to change his surname as his wife...

Equality of the sexes... My thought on this is very ambivalent.. as u said if u consider urself equal then u shud be prepared to stand in a bus... or stand in the same line while getting a ticket instead of a 'ladies line' ...
There are special ladies seat in buses..rest are general men are not allowed to sit there.. but women can sit on the general seats...

On people. men refusing to help.. i read in a comment above... and i completely agree with it..when a man offers to help.. he is seen with suspicion.... remember DCH.. when akshay khanna tries to help dimple kapadia....
moreover I guess that 'caring' attitude is many times inherently absent in men.. instead of volunteering urself, had u asked someone to give the berth, I am sure many would not have refused.. and had u asked some one to help with the luggage, you would have got help.... so u wud get help if asked or when a man sees that it is becoming difficult for the other person to handle..I am writing with certain experiences in mind and it may not be the case always... (that son asking old mother to get down with so much luggage on a smaller stop - that is plain stupidity or he was not aware that there wud be so much luggage..and also to be fair to him, who in the hell carries 13 luggage bags alone - that too in old age???)


but ur question that why men are like these - may be some biolgical reasons for those... or may be that suspicion which a man has to counter.. or many times a certain shyness in interacting with a stranger of the opp sex..

so I wud sugest next time u need help, just ask for it..i have no doubt u will promptly get it...

niki yokota said...

ladies seat??? we dont have it.
that sounds really strange..
we have a few ladies carriage of train, but some men ignore it.
i juz give them cold look.
they are weaker than anything.
u were using ur mothers family's surname? wat a cute girl lol

Cuckoo said...

Ketan,
Tried to reply to your comment but it had become longer than the post ! So, have decided not to reply to your comment. Anyways, thanks for your revisit. Sorry to say I don’t and can’t agree with you.

I appreciate your thinking very much.

KT,
If what I think is the meaning, I don’t think any sensible person will deny being feminist.
Rants?? Glad to know your perception. :))

Thanks for your visit. Make it more frequent.

PM,
there is a sect, which has a matrilineal culture.. I am aware of that culture. You missed the chance !! Now I will write sometime about it. :)
A feminist is a person who stands by the rights of a woman, whether the atrocities are done by a man or a woman... Absolutely correct! In fact I wanted to write about general exploitation of weaker individuals but as thoughts started to flow it just turned the path and... it had become quite a long post. Probably some day I’ll write without any constraints.

SiD,
I fully agree with you. As I said in my post, I believe in reservations for the needy and not for any gender, caste or race. Needy could be pregnant lady, an old man or even a handicapped person.
Yes, had I asked them for the berth, probably they would have obliged but then they could have done that even after my offer to the lady. And I am one of those persons with my ‘nose in the air’ (according to BTR), who doesn’t believe in asking. Ha ha… my thinking is very different. I always think the impractical but most optimist things.

Well, the lady was going back to her son after 6 months and was carrying a lot of things for the large joint family. She had all small items.. she even had one bag of her food though Rajdhani provides food !! She didn’t want to touch “baahar ka khana”, only home made food.

Niki,
Welcome again. Where do you vanish in between?
Well, we have ladies queues everywhere, ladies seats in buses, ladies coaches in trains, even ladies special local trains during peak hours !!
All ladies stuff !! And still I am crying over being exploited ! ;)

Mom’s surname?? Lol, I have done so many things like that.. sometimes I wonder I must have given lots of goose bumps to my parents. :P

Pyare Mohan said...

Great! so i can write about something else!

True, you wanted to write about weaker individuals, but as you went through the experience of writing it, it became more about women and male bashing. That is what i am trying to tell, the fact is that whenever a feminist starts talking (not referring to you, but in general) it ends up that the male bashing starts and never ends and the fight goes from an impersonal to a generic and then back to a personal one, unknowingly... :-)

Gangadhar said...

you know cuckoo,
new technics have come these days..i read somewhere that some people are mixing surnames(both wife's and husband's) to generate a brand new surname..for ex..my surname is "ambati"..and another's is say,bachina..you can form a new surname like chinabati..Tried to search the link..but couldn't find..

And for your query about my profile pic,...just answered on moi blog..

take care

Mridula said...

Changing surnames, hmmm, brings back memories. I didn't change mine after marriage.

Nicely done post.

Cuckoo said...

PM,
It is hard to stay in a straight line, thoughts just flow. :)) Waise bhi, it's such a vast topic, one can speak anything from any corner and still be within the boundary !

Gangadhar,
Welcome again. Where do you vanish sometimes ? :P
Wow!! Pls try to look again. Waise, I don't need a link, I already have in my mind what all I can write about it. ;) Wait for a post on it. Thanks. :))

Mridula,
After a long time !! Good to see you here. :)
I have noticed it many times... we do have many similar traits. Thanks for appreciation. :)

Sigma said...

Back ... as promised :-))

There are quite a few ideas discussed in your post, and the comments that have ensued. My two cents worth ...

1. Changing the name after marriage - this seems have created a lot of contention here :-). To me, the convention seems to have been created in the ages when the women had no identity of their own. But in the present times, many (sadly, the day when I could make that "all" seems to be far, far away) women are as highly educated as the men in the respective fields, and carve out a niche for themselves as individuals, before (or sometimes, after) they are married. They are mostly known by the name that was given to them at birth (which, in most societies, is the father's name) - this identity is a matter of pride and self-respect. Why should one be "forced" to "give up" her self that she has associated for so many years of her life. Then, there are the practical reasons - there are a number of legal documents which bear her maiden name - driving license, passport, pan card, elecoral id card, bank accounts, insurance policies - and it is a big hassle to get the name changed on all of them. I did not change my name after marriage, because of both these reasons, and neither did most of my friends and colleagues.

2. What is Feminism - most of the people have said, it stands for the equality of the sexes. I would perhaps view it as the right of a woman to independence - of thought, action, choice and decision, to respect - from men and women, but mostly from self, to freedom - from fear and abuse.

3. Reservation - I do not believe in any kind of reservation. But we must have enough civic sense to help and support the needy.

OK, I think I have written quite a lot here ... need to catch my breath now :-D

Cuckoo said...

Sigma,
Good to have your views here. In fact I was waiting for them. I really appreciate it when ppl take out their precious time to write opinions about the posts. lol... As someone said, the comments on my posts are usually longer than posts on his blog !! :P

1. Yes, I fully agree with you word by word but ask some of the respected, egoist men in our society.. they think it’s all worth these hassles as long as they (men) don’t have to change anything.
2. Feminism can have many meanings as per individuals, that’s why I first wrote my interpretation before starting the post. Whatever it is, isn’t the goal almost same for all of us ??
3. But we must have enough civic sense to help and support the needy.. Me, always very optimist, am with you on this, but do you think it is going to happen in near future ?

Again, thanks very much for your opinion here. :))

Keshi said...

Interesting post girl!

U know me na...Im a full-fledged feminist then LOL!

well u could have just asked him this one question back...

***Are u willing to change ur surname to ur wife's after marriage?


That would make him understand where ur coming from. U r someone who values equality of the sexes. It's also called human equality and it's universal.


**Gentlemen, we, the weaker sex need your support, your help in the same manner as we support you all through your life for all your needs without you even asking for it.


true but I dun agree that we r the 'weaker' sex. We may be physically weaker than men but we r definitely emotionally stronger than men. So men and women r equal after all :)


Keshi.

Cuckoo said...

Keshi,
My friend just wanted to know my views on the topic but yes, I asked this question to some other person who was all for change of name for females.

true but I dun agree that we r the 'weaker' sex. We may be physically weaker than men but we r definitely emotionally stronger than men.. Hmmm.. you have not read the full post, That's what I said. :P

Sigma said...

Does look like you were waiting for my comment ;-) you have replied at 11:00 pm ! :-D

To answer your question, things are chainging - people, especially our generation, have started paying attention to those small things like keeping our surroundings clean. Ido have hopesfor a beter future - near or distant, I don't know.

Please allow "email post" setting for your posts ... I wanted to forward this post to some of my "feminist" friends :-))

Cuckoo said...

Sigma,
Lollll..yes, you had said you'd come back so kind of.. waiting for your comments. :)) And now also I just happen to come here, lo your post has welcomed me again. :)

Well, hopes are some mirages that always keep us moving forward and we SHOULD have some. :))

e-mail post?? Done. :)

Jeevan said...

You have expressed well here dear!! I agree, Female's must have equal rights in the society. Women’s can we weaker in physically, but they are very healthy than male, they have more defiance power than males. The incidents you face in ur life makes shame of those guys. We people are living to help each other’s and should understand others suffer.

...Jeevan...
http://jeevansworld.blogspot.com

Cuckoo said...

Jeevan,
Welcome to my blog. I can see you have commented on my other blog also.

Female's must have equal rights in the society. Ditto !!

Thanks for your visit. Keep coming. :)

adi said...

oye!!!
bahut ho gaya
ab wapas aa jaiye

Eclipsed Thoughts said...

First thing... good post... but one thing i dont agree is the point where everyone... nearly everyone refers to females as "weaker sex"... why weaker sex???

About you called as a feminist, i would say you were a humanist... it is good to talk about rights, equailty and individuality... u are a person who thinks as a human... i think reservations and special previleges for a particular caste, color, sex and religion is crapp... and you were indeed impressive to say that "only the needy ones shoul d be previleged"... very true...

maybe people mistaken the idea of humanity and feminism... their mistakes.. and its high time everyone learns the importance of being a "human"...

u will see more of me around.

Cuckoo said...

Adi,
Main gayi kahan thi jo wapas aaun? Aap hi kahin nazar nahi aate. Still floating kya??

Eclipsed Thoughts,
Welcome once again. Read carefully, I said weaker physically not mentally. And we should admit it with open heart..we are indeed physically weak than our counterparts.
Hmmm.. I don't mind being called humanist ;) Thanks for your visit, keep coming. :D

jac said...

Remember that woman are not weaker sex anymore.


cookooo,I dont have link with my name, as I was refused entry and comment in your post because I am still not beta.

Cuckoo said...

Jac,
I said women are weaker physically not mentally and indeed they are!

Catmoves said...

"Then I beg to differ, I want to be abnormal."
You go girl. Unhappily this kind of attitude is a staple of current American life, too. I believe they call it "The I couldn't Care Less About You", generation.
But stick to your guns. After all, it not easy to be eccentric in this day and age. (Altered quote from Mark Twain.)
;)

Cuckoo said...

CatMoves,
Welcome to my blog. Thanks for liking the post. It is one of my favourites and I am amazed to see people coming & reading such old posts of mine.

Thanks very much.

Sam said...

lots of stuff said and done. first and foreost, wen u term someone as feminist its not about equality of sexes. Never is...... It used to at one point of time signify an attempt to change the existing social norms to bring about a revolution in teh standing of a woman in teh society vis-a-vis a man. Now, despite all its honest intentions it indicates a brand of people (more often than not women!!) who are simply into believing that all evil is perpetrated by men, they are just useless.... "we don't need men!!" a statement i have often heard!
where does that leave you??
If, the male specimens were not required evolutionary proces would have done away with the male ones.
So where are you driving at??

In all the examples that you have cited, I personally have experienced and seen the same, irrespective of the sex!!

Your points are more valid if we speak irrespective of a person's sex, but rather the nature... the upbringing... the social conditions!!

I have friends, who help out anyone who needs the help!! The girls stick to the ladies only seat.... their logic, "we can't sit on the general ones, as we personally don't appreciate men sitting in the seats marked for ladies".
And wen its not so..... dey r the happiest!!

Together we slog it out!! Its just that at teh end of teh day we all need teh presence of the other sex, the needs differ!! but they are complementary too!!

think abt it??

p.s: regarding teh surname issue!! am still muddleheaded on dat!! so no comments!!

sahil said...

hey cuckoo

Nice post. I think its really really great that you stand up for yourself and refuse to be forced to change your surname. Its only when people rebel against the established norms that societies change....way to go !!

However, lemme just say one thing here. Generalizations can sometimes really hurt to those who don't fall into the 'general' category. I have personally experienced this so many times in life myself that I have almost grown immune to it. But still it can hurt sometimes when people subconsciously hold prejudices against you even when they do not know you..)

So just a piece of well meant advise from a friend - the next time you meet a guy you have never met before, try not to hold any prejudices beforehand. All guys are not the same just like all gals are not.

Also, have you considered the possibility that in the incident that you describe in the post, the sex of the characters involved maybe simply a co-incidence. I personally think that you are just a nice kind hearted person and the other people (who happened to be men in this case) were simply not so.

Actually, I personally feel (based on my own experiences in life), that men and women are, on an average, pretty much at the same level when it comes to being loving and caring. Although their way of expressing it may be different. You find all kinds of people in life and from both sexes.
(Although, when I was a bit younger and relatively 'inexperienced', I used to always think that women are more loving/supporting then men. But now I don't.)

Shake Al Ansaari said...

hi cuckoo

This article was really thought provoking......and i really liked the way you have written......i generally don't read long articles...but still the starting was very gud n the topic was also nicely choosen.

U talk about helping elderly people.

Now give it a thought.....
How many girls stand up when they see a old man standing?

(As u only said exceptions are always there.....so neglect that )

Now i have travelled a lot in busses n trains....i have seen tonns of people....except a few....all behave in the same fashion....be it a guy or a girl.

Cuckoo said...

Sam,
Sorry for replying very late though I had read the comment on the day you wrote.

I can understand your frustration. Yes, the examples I cited were for one sex only but they were just examples, and perhaps a misfit here. Probably, at the time of writing this post I was just too disturbed.
I very much agree with you that it can happen with anyone. Haven’t I said that I helped them ? Most of the times who lend help to others are males not females. And I don’t agree with the examples cited by you. My opinions are different. As I have said, equality means equality. I, as an individual, am ready to stand in a crowded bus just like any other male. I don’t have any issue about that. My contention was for that pregnant lady & for that old lady who could not have done without other people’s help. Do you agree to that ? Had it been an old man or a handicapped boy, my views would have remained the same.

Yes, we both need each other, we can not do without each other’s support. Fully agree, have never denied it. Read carefully.

Cuckoo said...

Sahil,
First, I welcome you here on my blog. Sorry for replying late though I had read the comment on the day you wrote. Sometimes along with a busy schedule, I get too many comments. :) Not a complain but too much happiness. :)

I understand your point very well. It happens with me all the time. I know I don’t fall in the general category but still I am compared with & treated like. It is up to us to look beyond this generalizations, it is bound to happen every time.

Oh, I never said all the guys are same !! I know of many wonderful guys in my life including my father whom I look up to.

I personally feel, that men and women are, on an average, pretty much at the same level when it comes to being loving and caring. Although their way of expressing it may be different.. Oh, couldn’t have agreed more, Sahil !

Thanks for voicing your opinion. I need more of them. Keep coming. :)

Have a good day !

Cuckoo said...

Ansari,
First, thank you for liking the post and all the appreciations.

How many girls stand up when they see a old man standing? .. I do it and I will.

i have seen tonns of people....except a few....all behave in the same fashion....be it a guy or a girl… Absolutely right ! I was just trying to ask why they do it. Unfortunately in both the examples, the suffering party was a female.
See my above two replies.

Thanks for your opinion. Keep coming.