The festival of Raksha Bandhan is one of the most important festivals celebrated in India, primarily among the Hindus. It is an annual ceremony celebrated among siblings where girls tie rakhis on their brothers’ wrists. The festival celebrates the unconditional love of siblings. As the name suggests, the festival of Raksha Bandhan holds the promise of brothers that they would always stand by their sisters side and would protect them for life.
The hidden patriarchy in celebrating Raksha Bandhan
It would not be wrong to say that most of the festivals that we celebrate are patriarchal. To be precise, it seems as if we enjoy and celebrate festivals less but we enjoy and celebrate patriarchy even more. Think of a few festivals and the reasons why they are celebrated, you will find patriarchy that is hidden behind them.
Who said that only brothers can protect their sisters? Why can’t sisters go a step ahead and protect their brothers which we all generally do? And what does it mean when one says that you need to be protected by someone? There are no proper answers to any of these questions. But not surprisingly, there are a few predictable answers, like, this is what has been happening for centuries or this is what I have witnessed in my lifetime.
Think about the festival of Karva Chauth, is it a festival that celebrates our cultural heritage or patriarchal pride?
Girls are defying conventional norms
So, even if we are celebrating age-old festivals, we have grown up a bit. One baby step in this direction has already been taken. Today, we see girls who are tying rakhis on their brothers wrists but not with the same old thought of getting protection from them in return. It is also a story about how girls are stating that they will also love and protect their brothers by defying conventional norms.
Udisha Srivastav is an intern with SheThePeople.Tv