Feminism : Saam Daam Dand Bhed.

“They’re not burning bras, or burqas. But a bunch of non-conformist Muslim women activists are making an attempt to free the sorority from the clutches of a patriarchial clergy.

Last week, Lucknow-based feminist Shaista Ambar was on television again. This time she was siding with the three daughters-in-law… who had beaten up some maulvis at Sultanul Madaris… The maulvis had given talaqnamas (divorce documents) to the women’s husbands without consulting them when they tried to get justice against the advances of their father-in-law.” [Link]

[Click to read the entire article]

“Spreading wings:

Islamic feminism is a decade and a half old. In the 1990s Iranian, Egyptian, Turkish, Moroccan, South African, American, feminists and religious scholars, among others, found they were all simultaneously working on reinterpretations of women’s rights under Islam. It is now well on its way to becoming a robust international movement with more and more women pushing for a progressive Islamic discourse to promote gender equality.

And they aren’t alone, Himanshu Rai (Thanks Himanshu!) sent me this video link.


Click, or watch this video here. I understand what she means though I wish one didn’t have to do it this way, I wish it was possible to ask for human rights for all without having to reassure them you were not challenging their cultural/religious values 😦 But one has to be practical. Whatever works. Saam. Daam. Dand. Bhed.

Coming up next: A post dedicated to the Pinkest of Protesters πŸ™‚Β  Guess who? Special award in the Blogscars for the correct guesses!Β  😯

Related posts: Remembering Bra Burning Bogeymen on Women’sΒ Day.


27 thoughts on “Feminism : Saam Daam Dand Bhed.

  1. we are all still waiting for the awards to be announced IHM!! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

    But, really its awesome and commendable the way these women are trying to fight and reach out for that one spark of change.

    Will have to wait till I get home to view the TED video…


    • Wow… that video was brilliant… I kind of do agree with what she says and how she says it…
      Some of the strongest women in our families have been our grandmothers…
      The last couple of minutes, kind of sums up everything…
      Thank you for sharing this IHM


  2. Amazing speech, one that I absolutely agree with. You may wish that it were possible to achieve gender equality in some other way IHM, but it can not be imported or transplanted, it has to be home-grown, coming from the roots to be truly effective


  3. Gah! bra burners? I wish that stereotype about American feminists would die, because it’s not true!! >_<

    Well anyways, as for me I've spoken to Muslim women who consider themselves feminists. It's really interesting to speak with them. This also blows that whole stereotype about how Muslim women are helpless oppressed victims who can't speak for themselves out of the water.


  4. Me too read about this IHM,from your blgo itself..It is great to know that more and more people are finding and gathering the courage to talk and work against injustice…


  5. Gosh, I would actually say those women must thank their Stars for having got a divorce from such a disgusting family!!!
    Btw, the TED videos are all awesome!! Very inspiring!


  6. Amazing. Yes, it is a pity that women, who are the preservers of culture, have to ‘ask’ or ‘demand’ their rights to be safe and happy. To ‘live’.



  7. Different situations demand different actions ..as long as end is what we desire and the route peaceful and humane and legal …its a step forward.
    I salute to these women who have shown in their persistent ways that they can bring change , not by challenging but with reasoning . why segregate …you can be religious and feminine , deep rooted in cuture and still modern .. its thinking that seperate the two.

    video is inspiring !!


  8. IHM, Thanks for putting the TED link and mentioning me πŸ˜› (free publicity).

    We always put radical ideas for change but it works occasionaly in that way. Society takes the time and adapt it slowly. A change born from bottom up civil consciousness is slow but irreversible. Only few initiate and propel for a new way or lifestyle in begining. The real change in a stable society comes slowly through reforms brought by these traditional masses. They twist old approaches to accomodate new versions while blunting resistance of those in power. Just see the dressing sense of girls in india in last 60 years. How it changes slowly despite howls and cries of “Indian or Islamic culture saviours” !

    I don’t have much idea about feminst movements yet observe females push the limits each generation while building a consensus in the whole society. And sometimes you have to say : What counts is what works !


  9. nice video,
    question is do you want slow progress or fast ,
    do you want change for a day or a generation or forever
    this is where this lecture and ideas fail
    Please read more about how a modern Iran became todays religious or talibani Iran.


  10. finally its happening..I know their pain as I have very close associations with the muslims.
    Some people are waiting to break it..I can bet that some of my friends are like “wanna explode” volcanoes


  11. Great to see Kavita resurface after so many years on a blog. The Ramdas sisters were the star debaters of our school and our much idolized seniors.

    The TED website has quite a following and all the speeches are very inspiring.

    This one is my favourite, on what all schools need to become.


  12. Pingback: The Pinkest Protesters : The Gulabi Gang « The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  13. “Saam Daam Dand Bhed” .. shouldn’t it be “Saam Daan Bhed Dand” ? This is one ancient Indian phrase to order out sequence of actions against anything. .. Saam being lowest and dand being harshest.


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