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Seats and forms of power cas

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Par   •  31 Janvier 2016  •  Fiche  •  517 Mots (3 Pages)  •  632 Vues

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I choose to deal with the notion of forms of power through the theme of tradition, a counterpower in today’s India.

My topical question is what is the power of tradition over the Indian society?

To answer it, I will essentially focus on two major points: the dowry tradition and the caste system.

In India, if one is born a boy, there is a 40 per cent greater chance of surviving than as a girl. Partly as a result of the dowry tradition, in which the family of the wife-to-be gives a “dowry” or gift to the future husband’s family on marriage. This gift is supposedly given as compensation to the groom’s parents for the cost of educating their son. If after the marriage, the woman’s family does not keep its promise, the bride is subject to torture, or worse. This way, the dowry system leads to crime against women, ranging from emotional abuse, injury to even deaths.

Consequently, (over a million fetuses are aborted every year, and thousands of newborn girls are killed in the first week of birth. The dowry tradition has become so powerful that it leads to gendercide.

(Indeed,) in three generations, more than 50 million women have been selectively eliminated from India’s population through female feticide, female infanticide and dowry-related murders.

The reality is that the lines between crime and what it generally considered and accepted as “culture” have become blurred.

Many parents do not want to have daughters; simply because of the dowry system that implies both financial and social burdens.

Indeed, marriage in India usually follows a patrilocal system, where the groom lives with her husband’s family and can’t really take care of her own elderly.

As a result, in Indian villages, such as Karora, there are twice as many boys than girls.

However, the power of men over women is not the only issue in India.

The main religion in the country, Hinduism, introduced a new division of society, through the caste system. This tradition imposes on every Indian a set of position they can’t escape during a lifetime. It divides the society into four great hereditary social classes, which still survive today.

At the end of this social ladder, are the Dalits, also known as the Untouchables. These outcastes are commonly banned from full participation in the Indian social life: they are forbidden to enter religious worship places and barely considered humans. Dalits are only allowed certain jobs such as cleaners, cobblers and sewers. Most of them live on brink of destitution, with less than $2 a day.

Though the caste system is forbidden in India, discriminatory traditions still prevail and in doing so, become a handicap to the development of the country.

On the whole, I would say that even if India has been making progress for human’s rights, some communities continue to be in a subordinate status in the Indian society. Customs have become more powerful than the traditional institutions, which leads to exploitation of some minorities by others.

I could also draw a parallel with Morocco, where not all communities have always been on an equal footing.


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