Do some Indian men feel intimated by feminism because they think it will create a gynocentric society? At least 150 men do. Which is why they gathered on Manikarnika Ghat to perform last rites of this so-called “form of feminism”. The men also performed the last rites of their marital relations which had allegedly “suffered” at the hands of this feminist drive.

Speaking to The Hindustan Times, one participating activist said, “We don’t want to go back to traditional set up of the society in which men are considered as protectors and providers and women as caretakers. We support equality. But feminism in today’s form has deviated from its core values of equality and is trying to create a gynocentric society. Therefore, the last rites of the corrupted form of feminism, as it prevails in the society at present, was performed. We want equality in every form. Last rites of the bias and discrimination against men were also performed.”

Maybe women should have performed the last rites of patriarchy along with centuries of female oppression long ago. And voila! All our troubles would have disappeared.

I do not debate that some men are often wronged by some women with crooked intentions. But men have also been wronged by this culture of patriarchy, killing their dreams, challenging them to act ‘manly’ and burdening them with responsibilities, which could easily be shared by both men and women. But this male reverence has also showered numerous privileges on them. And now that women are challenging these privileges, they are on the back foot.

SOME TAKEAWAYS

  • Some 150 men gathered on Manikarnika Ghat to perform the “last rites” of feminism.
  • These men feel that feminism has strayed from its original aim to create a gender equal society.
  • They feel that women today intend to create a gynocentric society.

These men are accusing women (mostly their wives), claiming that the drive of feminism ruined their marriages. But what are marriages in our country? A biased system in which duties of each gender are chalked out. Which inherently treats women as secondary partners, who neither have an agency of choice nor do they have much say in decision-making.

They claim that they do not want to go back to the traditional set up which considers men as protectors and providers and women as caretakers. Good for them. But is that enough to achieve equality? Are men willing to give up all the privileges of patriarchy? Are they ready to share the burden of household duties, parenting, elderly care, etc. Will they be okay if women have equal decision-making powers in the house?

It is easy to mistake the struggle of feminism against these social evils as an attempt to create a gynocentric society.

Men feel that if women are refusing to do household chores, or disrupting the patriarchal mindset, then this is not equality, it is militancy. But is it really? Asking men to step down from privileges or sharing them is also an attempt to obtain equality. Also, just because some women misuse the sympathy they get from the law and society in name of abuse and dowry, shouldn’t let men hold it against the entire cause of feminism.

Feminism never supports criminal behaviour.

If men support equality, then they mustn’t feel insecure about losing privileges. They should also not attribute the wrongful or aggressive behaviour of a handful of women to the cause of feminism. As for marital discord, wouldn’t it be better to have a conversation with the wives first, before blaming it all on feminism? Maybe the wife’s unhappiness isn’t because of their intentions to create a gynocentric society. Maybe it is because of the said men’s love for antiques like this moronic ritual.

Also Read: Feminism Doesn’t Degrade Motherhood, Patriarchy Does

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.

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