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Women Empowerment by Demystification of Motherhood

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 05:30 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 50 
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Women Empowerment Through Demystification

            of Motherhood

N. Kavitha & V. Sakthivel

Lecturers in English

Dr. Sivanthi Aditanar College of Engg.

Tiruchendur-628 215.

Tamil Nadu.

South India- India.

Patriarchy has tactfully created a myth that motherhood is the only sphere that is essentially ordained for women. Women as a sex are considered to be the natural reproducers of mankind - naturally supposed to be the child bearers and rearers. Patriarchy celebrates this innate capacity of women as the so called woman – power. It indulges in an exaggeration of the motherly values of nature. Self effacement, unconditional love and devoted service are demanded from women for the perpetuation of patriarchal norms. This results in an idealization of motherhood which confines women to their role as nurturers. Feminists from the West, recognise this vicious trap – that patriarchy elevates motherhood and misleads women is order to exploit and circumscribe them.

Feminists maintain that motherhood as constructed by patriarchy is highly oppressive. It is far from being a liberatory and enriching experience for all women. It has been very important to contest the point of patriarchy that happiness comes only through motherhood and attack this myth which denies women their range of possibilities and opportunities. Betty Friedan relates the true essence of motherhood in her book The Feminine Mystique :

Motherliness is a way of life. It enables a women to express her total self with the tender feelings, the protective attitudes, the encompassing love of the motherly women (58)

But patriarchy misuses it as an instrument to subordinate women as a whole. The experience of maternity has been channelled to serve male interests and to stabilize the patriarchal laws as the universal law for women.

In addition, the sanctity of motherhood...


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