From Ultra Violet, “a community of young feminists blogging on the various issues, challenges, and triumphs that affect women in India today,” this is in response to Anand Giridharadas‘s piece ‘A feminist revolution skips the liberation‘ in the International Herald Tribune:
In saying, “Indian women are trading regular bras for push-up bras, by bypassing the phase of burning bras”, the writer demonstrates his lamentable ignorance not just of the history of feminism in India but also in the US. A quick Internet trawl would have told him that no bras were burnt. A group of protesters outside a Miss America beauty contest in Atlantic City in 1968 threw not just bras but also girdles, mops, pots and pans into a ‘freedom trash can’. A look at some feminist writing would have told him that feminists don’t actually view push-up bras as a great feminist victory though some of us may choose to wear them.
Anand Giridharadas in International Herald Tribune:
Mumbai: Arshi’s India is not your (or her) grandmother’s India.
She is 25 and saucy, a public-relations executive in New Delhi, a daughter of divorce who lives with a cocktail-mixing woman named Topsy. She and her circle exchange wet kisses with their boyfriends in the privacy of their cars, relish both loving and loveless sex, and smoke a cigarette every few minutes. They pride themselves on rolling joints with that perfect-sized marijuana nugget, “the size of the Nokia switch-off button.”
Two generations after a sexual revolution gusted through the West, a new generation of urban women in repressive societies like this one would appear to be riding that revolution’s second wind.
But appearances lie, and feminism, Indian-style, can be so accommodating, so eager to please and appease, that it is sometimes scarcely feminist at all.
Previously in AW: The girls’ guide to flirting and shopping