Examining Gender

Masculinity & femininity, where gender falls short of identifying us, navigating the crossfire between genders, the politics of gender identity.

Male Vulnerability
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Male Vulnerability

I read a really lovely book, featuring a club of men in traditionally macho professions (sports jocks, nightclub owners) getting together to learn about women and relationships by reading romance novels. The premise tickled me and its chicklit style carried me through well. Most of all, I found myself feeling…

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A Thousand Apologies

After I asked women to share instances when men apologized to them, I realised something stood in the way of men and the word SORRY. I want to believe men are as rational & feeling as women and can see the damage done by not taking responsibility for their actions….

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Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word

I asked women to tell me about a time a man apologised to them. Genuinely, taking responsibility for his actions/words, acknowledging damage done. I received one story about an apology followed by remedying the situation. Another spoke about apologies becoming excuses to turn the blame onto her. One spoke of…

Men With Dark Pasts – Indian Matrimony’s Vyasar
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Men With Dark Pasts – Indian Matrimony’s Vyasar

We glorify the dude with the dark past. The slightest chink in the brick wall facade that he calls a personality, is celebrated. But does he deserve us?

Is This Feminism? – Negative Space
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Is This Feminism? – Negative Space

We are all facing the question of what privilege means, do we have it, how much of it and what this bodes. Race, caste, gender, religion, language. Privilege creates barriers & hierarchies. Because it’s inherently unjust, it’s also subtle & silent. People with privilege literally cannot see it. Because their…

Bon Feminist!
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Bon Feminist!

Are sealions good to eat? How about sadboi trolls? Incel brodudes? Interrupting shitposters?I thought about my claim that my feminism eats these guys on toast then realised it was time to diversify my feminist palate. Poached MRAs Let’s start with breakfast, my favorite meal of the day. Thanks to my…

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A New Solidarity

#BoysLockerRoom presents an idea of solidarit as a quality used to protect wrongdoers from consequences. Everyone is made to participate as a virtue. I want to reclaim this idea of solidarity. It’s not a fortress meant to protect privilege. It’s a context of support that nurtures people’s better values. Women are…

We Should All Be Nightiewali Aunties

We Should All Be Nightiewali Aunties

I saw a trio walk down the main road that I face, last night. Slow, ambling gait and a shapeless collective shadow. As they passed under the street light, I caught a flash of familiar fabric swathes across their bodies. Dupattas, hijabs, masks – who could say? Immediately the thought…

Saree-Wearers Club
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Saree-Wearers Club

There is a sense that the Saree Wearers’ Club is an exclusive one, limited to women who are married or of a certain age, have a certain body shape and even they wear it in certain ways & on occasions only. Any variation from this invites attack. I’ve been exploring…

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Feminine Strength

The sexes need each other and define each other. Patriarchy rejects this by deeming any form of need or interconnectedness as weak/feminine. But all society and relationships are built on the joint and collaborative strengths of human beings needing and fulfilling each other’s needs in balance. I’ve been asked why…

Aunty National
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Aunty National

Some time ago, I watched a woman walk into a coffeeshop. She was dressed in a neon yellow jacket, neon yellow sneakers & microshorts and sported a ponytail on either side of the head, held back with – you guessed it, neon yellow ties. She looked like she was in…

Different Shades of Grief
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Different Shades of Grief

How many things shall I grieve? I was watching THAPPAD. I thought about the people who have hit me. In plural. I had experienced enough of it before I touched adulthood. Yet, at 23, when a man I loved hit me, I knew something was wrong. Was it the force…

I Wear: Saree Sisterhood
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I Wear: Saree Sisterhood

I reconnected with a woman I knew very slightly years ago. At the time, I assumed she was snooty (and so many unflattering things we’re taught to think about ourselves and other women instead of acknowledging strength). When a wave of stories about men’s atrocities began coming out a couple…

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Menstrual Cup Anniversary: Third Time’s A Charm

In a conversation with new cup users, I went looking for the chronicle I knew I’d written and realised I’d never published it. So here goes for my menstruating peeps, hope it helps! This is a recap and my learnings on my cup journey. I am very happy, now that…

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Women Walking

Women. We are fed a steady diet of messages that other women are the enemy, that women can’t be friends, that women’s relationships with each other can only revolve around a man (Hello Anjali-Tina-Anjali of KKHH). The world looks at us as objects to be exploited and maximised for use….

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Strong Woman

This label is burden. I see a look in my eyes, a look I’ve seen on the faces of divorcees, of women who have been beaten up who’ve moved on, in the fleeting expressions of successful women, old women. Because women only achieve success with age. And success necessarily means…

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One Of The Girls

I used to think of myself as ‘one of the boys‘, because I didn’t identify with how femininity was practised around me. I wanted to own my intelligence, my independence and strength the way I saw only boys do. I walked, talked and dressed in a close approximation of my…

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Feminism Is A Conversation

Navigating A Feminist Identity Last evening was a series of odd events. It started when I was hosting an open mic. One of the performers ranted about being friendzoned, spewing vitriol on the woman and ended up calling the audience boring because nobody would applaud. While this person was still…

Different Languages, Same Alphabet
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Different Languages, Same Alphabet

Play a game with me. Ready? Pick any one answer: QUESTION: What do you call a guy who makes a call at 1:30AM stoned and drunk to a girl who said she was having a bad day at 11:30PM? A. A thoughtful, considerate, caring person who is taking time off…

Living With The Struggle
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Living With The Struggle

The struggle is real. This is the struggle to see men as worthy of empathy. No, they do not make it easy. And everyone and their brother and misogyny-internalised sister collude to shame me for not feeling more empathy. Who will explain that empathy cannot be forced? That shaming and…