Dear Society, Don’t Make Women Swallow Their Success 

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Why does our society envy successful Indian women? The dawn of gendering work and success broke a long time ago. We have all been conditioned into thinking that certain things aren’t meant for us because of the sex we are born into. Why Does Society Envy Successful Indian Women?In spite of all the societal conditioning, women have proved that they are above such petty differences. Although they have been bogged down by everyone around them, they have crossed all barriers to get whatever they want. But are women appreciated enough for breaking barriers?

Why Does Society Envy Successful Indian Women?

Don’t you think there are times when a woman’s success means nothing to anyone? Besides that, don’t families have a problem with marrying their sons to a woman who is more successful than them? Why is a woman’s success always viewed as a threat? 

History Has Always Been Provoked By Successful Women

This attitude of downplaying or undermining a woman’s success comes from the sexist mindset boosted by patriarchy. Although women have played important roles in ancient times, they invited a lot of resistance in their path too. In mediaeval India, Sultana Razia was condemned for succeeding her father to the throne. The Turkish nobles at her court detested the fact that a woman was ruling over the kingdom.

In a mere three years, she succumbed to the pervading misogyny and patriarchy of her times. Had she been a man, she would have certainly enjoyed a long reign. Rani Chennamma of Keladi had to bear with the initial resistance from her courtiers when she assumed control over the kingdom.

Chandi Bibi, Successful Indian women

Chand Bibi, the regent of the Bijapur and Ahmednagar Sultanate had to face a similar resistance. Ahilyabai Holkar, the queen of Malwa had earned the envy of Peshwa Raghoba as she successfully ruled over the kingdom after the death of her husband, son and father-in-law. Male rulers often viewed women as both a weakness and threat, and would make the mistake of undermining their female opponents.

How else did Rani Tarabari defeat the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb? How was it possible for Rani Abbaka to defeat the Portuguese? How did the Rani of Jhansi stand up against the British Raj? 

History Shows Women Never Got The Credit For Their Work 

The 20th century was a period when science flourished to the fullest. But the scientific community wasn’t free from sexism and misogyny. Jocelyn Bell Burnell was an Irish scientist who discovered pulsars in 1967. However, the Nobel prize in Physics for this discovery went to her supervisor Anthony Hewish, and another astronomer at Cambridge University.

Esther Lederberg and her husband Joshua were pivotal in inventing the replica plating technique for transferring bacterial colonies, but the Nobel prize went to Joshua and two other scientists. Rosalind Franklin was allegedly snubbed by her fellow scientists Watson, Crick and Maurice Wilkins who called her an ‘overly emotional woman’. It is believed that they stole her work and published their research paper which elucidated the structure of the DNA.

Don’t you think that these women deserved recognition for their work? Don’t you think that the scientific community lacked the scientific temper of recognising women as geniuses?

Wasn’t it immature for them to recognise a person’s scientific brilliance with respect to their gender? 

Successful women Are Still Viewed As Objects Of Envy 

Successful women are still envied in the 21st century. Taking care of the household chores and children is still considered to be the best profession for them. The boy’s parents often prefer a girl who is either a housewife or less educated than their son. It is considered improper if a daughter-in-law ends up earning more and being more successful than her husband. Why? Because she end’s up bruising her husband’s ego.

This kind of mentality is toxic as it puts a lot of pressure on both men and women. A man is pressurised into being the financial provider for his family, while a woman’s abilities are completely overlooked. This also forces men into securing a high-paying job they might not like to do.

Indian parents often imagine an unrealistically successful future for their sons and do everything to make such things a reality. Daughters don’t get much say on the what they wish to do in life either.

Why must we allow society to define  success for boys and girls? A boy might not be all that ambitious, while a girl might be the opposite. Is it fair to provide wings to one and not the other? 

Rather, it would be beneficial if we try to support women who are more successful than their partners. A successful woman should not be viewed as a threat who need to be pulled down. Don’t make women swallow their success in order to make men feel ‘better’ about themselves. Pulling down one gender for the sake of the other is downright outrageous. On that note, I would like to say that women aren’t meant to butter up the society by being ‘less successful.’