Rape Victims In Mahasweta Devi's Draupadi

2012 Words 9 Pages
The Representations of Rape Victims in Select Indian Women Writings
Mrs. Roopna Ravindran
Lecturer in English
GDC Shadnagar
Mahabubnagar District

Women face violence in the patriarchal Indian society in many forms. The most upsetting form is sexual assaults and rape. Violence against women is a major answerable issue that negatively affects empowerment of women. The paper aims to bring out the power structures prevalent in the patriarchal Indian society. The dominant sex is male and women are considered to be inferior and weak. Women writers were not given enough space for expression in Literature. Post 1970s witnessed a lot of women writers expressing problems pertaining to their lives and experiences. The suppression
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Mahasweta Devi comments on the rape culture existent in India "It is very unfortunate. People should raise their voice and there should be protests from all sections of the society". In ‘Draupadi’ by Mahasweta Devi, the rape of women is the theme. In Devi’s “Draupadi,” a tribal rebel is raped by authorities of the state. The government uses all forces available to them to eliminate the existence of tribals. She is strong even after days of sexual assault. In “Draupadi,” the unveiling of clothes reveals immense woman power. The subaltern women character is strengthened rather than weakened after the brutal sexual assault: “Draupadi stands up. She pours the water down on the ground. Tears her piece of cloth with her teeth…..Senanayak walks out surprised and sees Draupadi, naked, walking toward him in the bright sunshine with her head high” (Devi, 196). The character portrayed by Mahaswetha Devi uses her body as a weapon against her enemy. Dopdi is empowered by the rape. She is not concerned about her chastity and honour that are generally attributed to women by the patriarchy. Although society will always have preconceptions of rape and how a woman should and will react to being raped, it is apparent through “Draupadi’. Rape can make a woman or it can shatter a …show more content…
In majority of the Indian households boys and girls are brought up differently. The society constructs what is to be "feminine" or "masculine”. Patriarchal Indian society teaches girls to be passive, submissive, caring, nurturing. Boys are taught to be the opposite of girls. Masculinity is defined as being aggressive, competitive, and dominant. Indian society from the time of Manu has considered women in this way only and secondary place has been given to women. Women and men internalize these imposed stereotypes of male domination and female submission/objectification. Stereotyped images of women that satiate male sexual fantasies, objectify women and promote a passive, glamorous, sexually available female, reinforce the myths about rape and the idea of women as sex objects. Rape becomes more widespread and persistent due to the condition in which women's bodies are increasingly commodified. Marital rape is very common phenomena in the sexually repressive Indian society. Shashi Deshpande’s writings also focus the issue of marital rape in both of her stories ‘The Intrusion’ and A Liberated

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