Still I rise

Dishari Sarkar :

Growing up in a patriarchal society where you are encountered by sexism, domination and myths about your gender, hypocrisy at every step does not seem to be as easy as it appears to be.  It is too tough to stand against the establishment of male domination. Still we try hard to rise to the occasion going by the path depicted in “Still We Rise” of Maya Angelou. The time has come to repulse the domination of Patriarchy. It is the time to realize that it isn’t attributable to woman’s fault to have vagina and breasts, and womanhood isn’t futile and we worth it equally.

With the passage of time during my journey struggling hard, day in and day out, my realization prompted me to begin my journey at the dawn of my adolescence when my inner conflict kept on reeling within. I could not get myself uncharacteristic to pave a relationship with a male; rather I went on indulging in growing up until I was disillusioned of the physical exposure emanated from my opposite gender in the form of conventional demand. I realized it was going to give a black spot over my innocence and came out with due struggle. I had to take a pause for sometime but gradually my inner feeling started coming from within thereby leading me to the path I should follow. I took much time to go forward braving the conventional and perhaps the self-declared legitimate influence of patriarchal society. My mental spirit built up during the intervening period preached me to throw away all the threats I received so long and I got a new shape in my life not only for myself but also for taking care of the womanhood of the entire society.

I can hardly deny that this transformation in me happened overnight. I had to muse upon the sensitive issue for years together and I was in quest of way out to stand against such unwanted influence. Finally, I felt that openheartedness and mental spirit with exchange of views in vindication of raising voice would make it possible to set us free from this ill-devised nexus. This thought itself called for breaking stereotype style depression over womanhood causing unbearable gender biased anxiety. This continuous search has enlightened me with the introduction of a therapy of Feminism that has changed my life completely. That is ‘Feminist therapy’.

The therapy and the ism both provide us mental strength to stand against sexism in the form of perversion, instilment of societal perspective of your body, rape culture and above all helps us to discover ourselves, know ourselves better and to identify the perils, the oppression, discrimination which have been in convention for decades together in the disguise of culture and morality. The ecstasy of hypocrisy should be uprooted. By definition “the therapy is a form of psychology centered on social structures and gender. Feminist psychology critique historical psychological research as done from a male perspective reveals a view that males are at the helm of affairs in the society.  Feminist psychology is oriented on the values and principles of feminism”. The core concept is to develop a response from the women who experience mental health issues as a result of psychological oppression. It helps me to overcome gender restriction. It recognizes oppressions instead of tagging them as a defect in me. It helps me to reach the socio-cultural context. It allows me to be vocal on my own experiences for liberating ourselves and others to come forward. It gives me dimensional angle to adjudge the situation.

This therapy is more appropriate for women-psychology rather than our mainstream treatment as sometimes it neglects and doesn’t recognize the problems lying hidden in a woman’s life in a gender biased society. The therapeutic work teaches us to celebrate ourselves, our choices. I still practice it by raising questions, reading, and educating myself in the light of truth. It makes me stronger enough to hit the sentiment of patriarchy, to challenge it.

Under the above backdrop, an inference may be drawn to the effect that it is always you who has the potential to study hard and struggle harder to bring in a change, to make headway for others. It is always you who can afford to raise a voice against rape culture in the name of entertainment. It is always you who can push yourself to fight for the unheard suffering from domestic violence, marital rape. It is only us. And the therapy is just the key to have mental spirit and strength to undertake the journey. Maintaining a tune with the poem of Maya Angelou, I wish to have a pause here.

You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.”

About the writer:

Dishari Sarkar is pursuing M.A. in Journalism and Mass Communication from University of Calcutta.
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