Monday, May 23, 2011

Rise of patriarchal society - notes

From India's unwanted girls

How girls are valued varies widely across India. Over the years, most states in the south and north-east have been kind to their girls, and sex ratios are above the national average.

In the matrilineal societies of Kerala and Karnataka in the south and Meghalaya in the north-east, women have enjoyed high status and commanded respect. But the latest census figures show the good news even in these areas could be turning bad. A minor decline in the number of girls has begun in the three states which, campaigners worry, might be indicative of a trend.
The matrilineal society of Karnataka!? (and why the blogger word checker doesn't identify "matrilineal" when even the BBC uses it?).  Strictly speaking, only Tulu region was traditionally matrilineal (and most likely only one dominant caste remained matrilineal in 20th-21st century). But it would be nice if the whole society turns into at least ambilineal (well, by that I mean, sons patrilineal and daughters matrilineal).

Update on 24-05-11:
But if the other story is any indication, in the worst case scenario (excess girls in normal societies and excess boys in anti-female societies) matrilineal societies would help the patriarchal societies to sustain themselves. 

4 comments:

anilkurup said...

Like in many cases education alone does not solve the problem!

manju said...

Yes, considering the fact that the states that showed healthy sex ratio were traditionally so, it's evident that societal structure makes all the difference.

Anonymous said...

Interesting article. Not coz of the content but revealing insight - BBC also lifts articles. It was written by ToI in its Sunday edition last year. At that time Sreeja had only one child - a girl.

Quoting same people, same angle. It was also convenient for the author to overlook why these girls from Kerala had to take this decision. That was the most important point. The negatives of an erstwhile matrilineal society now opting for patriarchy.
People from North were willing to pay Rs 1 lakh to these girls' families whereas in Kerala they could not afford gold for their daughters' wedding!!. It was Sreeja who facilitated the marriage of the other woman in the same village.

While the birth of Sreeja's first girl child was celebrated in Kerala her husband's family did not take that kindly, according to ToI.
Now by the look of it she has another girl

I dont know who is valued better and where the notion and benefits of this `value' comes from.

Another point is that all these girls belong to backward caste in Kerala. They are also economically backward.

manju said...

Yes, I have read this story before and know the backgrounds of Kerala women.

The negatives of an erstwhile matrilineal society now opting for patriarchy.
People from North were willing to pay Rs 1 lakh to these girls' families whereas in Kerala they could not afford gold for their daughters' wedding!!.


I suppose the negatives of matrilineal system were that it didn't create political and social system to safeguard interests of women. Whereas patriarchal system at least created a hierarchical support structure for men's interests.

Marriage-as we know today- shouldn't have been there in the case of matrilineal societies.