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Rebel Rebel July 5, 2007

Posted by astralwicks in impulse, india, protest, rebel, rebellion, revolutionary, woman.

It was like any other day. But.

In a dramatic gesture of protest a young, 22 year old, newly-married woman stripped to her undergarments and walked out of the house. She walked out of the house and into the rain that was battering the city. Shocked Indians had a dream come true. What they used to watch surreptitiously on tv and in magazines and foreign films suddenly materialized in front of their eyes on a rainy day.

They couldn’t believe their eyes. ‘Was the girl mad? No, the girl is mad. Why blame the in-laws, see how she didn’t blink an eye. She walked head held high and shoulders that didn’t droop. The in-laws must be right treating her the way she did. The girl must be a psycho or…’

The entire city and probably the country will debate this woman’s act for a couple of days before consigning her to the bin but the dramatic nature of protest quite simply shocked me and then humbled me.

Almost all of us are besieged by unbearable extraneous situations on a daily business. The apathy of the government, the disregard of loved one’s, the crude common milieu, the overbearing superior or the supercilious rich. On a good day almost all and everybody can drive one up against the wall. But what do we do. Do we protest? How do we protest?

Is individual protest in the 21st century liable to make any difference? Will people hear us, see us, differentiate us from the crowd? These questions assail us from all quarters and then we let them go, compromise with the situation and move on. After all there is no time to stop, pause, think and rationalize, understand one’s anger, try to express the rage, not kill the angst but use it creatively to make sense of one’s life and fate.

No. It’s better if we just move on.

But this girl did a brave act. Nobody knows so far, at least I don’t why she did what she did? Her in-laws like many other in-laws are the primary cause. And so she took matter in her own hands and what did she do?

Was it an impulsive act? Will she regret this day in her later years? Does an impulsive act have to be inherently flawed, wrong? No. What she did was to assert her individuality, her womanhood by exposing herself completely to the gaze, both male and female. She asserts and denies her womanhood by the same action. Her protest is revolutionary.

She is a rebel. Long live the rebel.



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