Feminism Issue In Dey Raju by Saras M Manickam By Dayang Khairunnisa binti Abang Mohammad PISMP 1.09 TESL
FEMINISM ISSUES1. WOMEN’S TYPICAL CHARACTERSTICS a) Obsession towards romantic movies b) Women loves compliment ; men makes use of that fact2. GENDER STEREOTYPING (ACTIVITY-DOMAIN)3. WOMEN AS FAITHFUL AND PIETY WIVES (SERVE THE HUSBAND)4. WOMEN AS A SYMBOL OF BEAUTY (MEN ARE ONLY ATTRACTED TO THAT)
1. WOMEN’S TYPICAL CHARACTERISTICS A. Obsession towards romantic movies. a) As portrayed in the short story, Raju’s mother was so obsessed with Tamil movies that she brought Raju with her into the cinemas and would not want to miss any movie, regardless of her- motherly-tasks.
T.E. – “When I was a baby, mum used to smuggle me into the cinemas….” “To miss even one Tamil movie was unthinkable. Mum wasn’t going to have any of that-baby or no baby.” This characteristic is very common among woman subjects and it could be a very offensive way of portraying women as a creature of habit and unable to separate themselves from obsession. (personal VS works)
b) Women loves compliment; men makes use of that fact. Despite of the bride’s beauty, she had a weakness. She was squint-eyed. However, Raju was not bothered by the eyes and thought it was charming. T.E. – “When I was born, I brought my father tremendous business luck. He didn’t want to ruin it. Does my…does it revolt you?” (the bride) “I think it’s charming” (Raju)
At first, the bride was worried and angry. She thought that Raju would be bothered by her squint eye. However, the bride lost her temper and slowly became more comfortable when Raju told her that her squint-eye was charming.
2. Gender stereotyping (activity-domains) It was portrayed in the story that women were attached to their own gender-fixed tasks, such as being in the kitchen and doing all the cooking, cleaning and women-related tasks. T.E. a) “She was not in the kitchen where women stirred curries and cleaned…” b) “Mum wasn’t in the bedroom either, where my aunts were arranging
3. Women as faithful and piety wives (serve their husband) Although the marriage was arranged by the family, greater power was possessed by his father on that matter. The mother just obeyed and do what she was supposed to do, which was helping with the preparation of the marriage. T.E. a) “….go ask your father, he arranged everything.”
The textual evidence implied that even the mother has no objection or whatsoever suggestion towards the marriage. Her husband controlled and arranged “everything” and her task was to serve him. (doing the work and preparation) They(the women) were raised that way and eventually, they were used to the idea of letting “everything” on their husband’s hands.
4. Women as a symbol of beautyand men are only attracted totheir beauty. At first, the bride was mistaken for a fat and ugly woman. Raju was terrified. T.E. – “She was built like a warship…. My insides shriveled up. I swear I could feel them curling up to die.” Raju wanted to call-off the wedding.
However, he met the actual bride and fell in love with her on the spot because she was beautiful. T.E. – “She was neither Savithri nor Padmini; neither fat nor skinny. She was just beautiful…. Her eyebrows were delicate new moons and her nose, her mouth…” This implied that men are only attracted to women for their beauty. Raju refused to marry the “fat girl.”
This is the negative effect of gender- stereotyping, where Raju expected or wanted his bride to be as beautiful as Savithri and Padmini, the actresses he used to adore for their beauties. When women were portrayed to men (in mass media, arts..) as creatures of perfect beauty, men will expect every woman to be as beautiful as what has been portrayed to them.
Raju was somehow affected by what he saw from the Tamil movies.
Summary of The Short StoryDey Raju by Saras MManickam The story tells about Raju, who has been raised in a Tamil-household. Despite of being highly educated, Raju, not like any other young men, is still so conservative and he holds to his Tamil culture, which is the “arranged marriage”.
He does not know his future bride and he does not love her either, but he does not go against the idea of arranged marriage. It is when he actually meets his future bride that he fall in love with her on the spot because she is a very beautiful woman, not like Savithri and Padmini, the Tamil actresses he used to adore for their beauty, but she is just beautiful. It is a sweet story of love at the first sight.