Patriarchy is an age-old plague which still runs rampant in the 21st century. It has created boundaries and has imposed a system in society that creates stereotypes. Even though women are trying to break these barriers by fighting for equality and by propounding feminism, still, this horror lurks and has created a burrow in society affecting different genders.
Women especially in rural areas, are still prone to the contagious and toxic traditions which society has pushed upon them, be it managing the family business or even being the main income earner. Being the breadwinner in the household gives one power – this is what we have been conditioned to believe, but this belief needs to be put away. Women also have the right to be as independent as a man along with being treated equally.
Even the notion ‘Man of the house’ is seen to be derogatory, I mean why can’t it also be the ‘Woman of the house’! Due to patriarchy certain positions are restricted to that particular gender, eg- Cooking, cleaning, looking after the children, buying groceries is supposed to be a woman’s job and men are supposed to have a stable job, earn money, manage the household budget and look after tasks outside the house.
These stereotypical roles which society has labelled us with are not only a burden on the females but also the males.
Even though there are many people who try their best to break these barriers, certain conservative sections in society have been unable to accept it. Women have not left any stone unturned when it comes to proving themselves equal to there counterpart, they can be CEOs, doctors, lawyers and PhD holders and can take care of their household at the same time.
Even in the urban regions of Metropolitan cities patriarchy does exist. Be it the difference in wages or favouring men over women for higher positions in companies. Nuclear families today see both the husband and wife working, but it is still considered the wife’s duty to look after the children, take care of the household and to maintain a certain balance at home. But there are also families where the husband goes out to buy groceries, cook and clean and even take care of the house so that all the burden is not on the wife’s head.
Even the so-called notion that ‘women are bad drivers’ is a term which has been born out of a patriarchal society and is absolutely not true. We rarely see the notion of the husband staying at home and taking care of the house and the children while the wife goes out to work and earn. Nowhere has it been written that wives are supposed to be house makers and men are supposed to be money earners. It is said that these roles which break us into watertight compartments are actually because of the work men and women had started doing. Society was so primitive at that time that they were put into a category which till date are still being looked up to, as society has greatly changed over time and has become modern, these watertight categories need to be broken so that a new way of living can be introduced in society.
Patriarchy has affected men as well. Men have to be un-phased by the hurdles which come their way. The belief that ‘men don’t cry’ or ‘men shouldn’t cry’ is one of the most illogical concepts in society. Men are also human beings and emotion bearing creatures who are allowed to show their emotions.
Patriarchy holds men to be the beneficiaries of the system but eventually, it has affected them as well, it has paved way for hyper-masculinity. Men are seen to be mentally strong beings and are labelled as invincible. Sadly, the men who go against their stereotypical roles are labelled as weak and coward, which is absolutely wrong.
The LGBTQ community is also affected by the notion of patriarchy, and as they fight for their equality, they will always be labelled as the other gender. They still live in a society where they will always be seen differently, the stigma surrounding this issue has to be erased. We need to look forward to a society which is label-free where we all are known as ‘humans of this world’ .
Patriarchy has proven to be a burden on society, it pressurises us and has restricted our movement, it has imbibed within us a notion where we have been conditioned to think in a certain way and has left us all in a crux which needs to be broken.