Stop demonizing Indian culture!

NEW YORK — The brutal rape and ensuing death of a 23-year-old woman in Delhi — now known as Damini (“lightning” in Hindi) — along with concurrent massive civil society mobilization in India around these events, has ignited a flurry of speculation and analysis within Western media about why India is such a dangerous place for women.This quest for causal answers has led to a tried and tested theory about India’s “patriarchal culture,” where Indian men are characterized, as Libby Purves put it recently in the Times of London, by a “murderous, hyena-like male contempt” towards women. Leaving aside the blatantly problematic metaphor of Indian men as scavenging animals, Sonia Faleiro’s New York Times op-ed lamented that legal measures against rape in India “have been ineffective in the face of a patriarchal and misogynistic culture.”Attention to India’s “patriarchal culture” occludes the prevalence of rape and other forms of violence against women throughout the entire world.Continue Reading…

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Stop demonizing Indian culture!

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