Notes from Convenor's Desk

 Convener Women’s Committee

At the time of the formation of Darshana in 2007, it did not seem that there was a need for a women’s wing as far as the women of Darshana Society were concerned. In a progressive movement like Darshana, it was fair to assume that equal opportunity was already being provided to all. But what we had missed out to account for was the fact that however progressive a community may be, it still exists within the larger structure of the patriarchy and cannot be immune to it.

Because more than a decade later, in retrospect, it was realized that the representation, involvement and activities of women in Darshana were declining drastically. In general, if women are to be brought to the forefront of society, they will have to be given responsibilities. The vast majority of women are confined to their work and household responsibilities, bogged down in the performance that society expects from them, they’re forced to console themselves with the idea that social activism will be taken up by someone else. This is due to an inherent imbalance that exists in our society from time to time.

This inherent imbalance, no matter how progressive-thinking the organization may be, can occur unknowingly in all the activities and groups in which we are a part. We need to take action on our part to eliminate this imbalance.

As is common knowledge in leftist spaces, when there is such an existing oppressive social structure, the affected groups often benefit from safe spaces and initiatives to throw light on their specific experiences. Darsana’s women’s wing attempts to provide a similar space for women and gender minorities until we get to a point where women’s issues are treated as social issues. Because it was always “Workers of the world, unite!”

Her-Story is the first event organised by the Darsana  Women’s Wing. While circulating its promo videos and posters, we received mixed reactions We had heard male colleagues in very educated and well-respected positions use expletives against the posts we shared.

This is the result of the fear of losing the privilege of being born in one gender as opposed to another.

These attempts to ridicule and silence informative sessions such as these only continue to prove how necessary they are. Her Story and Darsan Women’s Wing promise to stand support as long as the word “feminism” elicits such extreme reactions from society, for as long as feminists are pressured to reiterate how women’s issues are society’s issues, until humanity is freed from the prison that is gender itself.

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