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Social Position of Women in Ancient India

Social Position of Women in Ancient India
Item Code: NAX261
Author: Sutapa Ray
Publisher: Sanskrit Book Depot
Language: Engilsh
Edition: 2015
ISBN: 9789381795682
Pages: 66
Other Details: 9.00 X 6.00 inch
weight of the book: 0.13 kg
We are now in the twenty-first century. We are proud of our achievements in different fields. We excel in arts, sciences, medicines and so many other things. Our intellectual achievements also are not less remarkable. We have reached new heights in almost every sphere. But, strangely enough, our attitude towards women remains as primitive as ever. Thus for example, in the Aitareya Brahman (an ancient Sanskrit text), in the legend of Sunahsepa, we find the sage Narada giving at least ten reasons why the birth of a son is to be considered a great blessing, and that of a daughter only a curse. As we are all aware, in India, even today, the birth of a female child is not only extremely detested, but often attempts are made to prevent it from seeing the light of day at all. The government has to come up with a law that the determination of the gender of the foetus is a crime punishable by law. Thus the subject taken up by the present author for discussion is relevant even today. It is both ancient and modern.

Scholars are sharply divided in their opinion as regards the actual situation in ancient India. Some contend that the position of woman then was certainly the worst possible. But others argue that it was not that bad and women were given due honour and respect. Manu the most prominent of our law-givers, has been severely criticised by many for his remark that a woman should never be granted independence, because in childhood she is under the protection of the father, in youth under that of the husband and in old age under that of the son. But it is also a fact that Manu has elsewhere extolled women as 'the beautiful shining lamps of the household' and again, has declared that gods revel only where women are worshipped.

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