Women have always pulled down other women. Personally, never seen men do such things. The world would have been a much different place if we were more united and supportive of each other.
The lines below are from the book ‘Pyre’ from one of my favourite authors, Perumal Murugan. The hero, Kumaresan elopes with Saroja and has an inter-caste marriage. A newly married couple full of dreams and love go to live in Kumaresan’s village. But Kumaresan’s old mother Marayi is not happy about it. First, it is an inter-caste marriage, second she is from a city and doesn’t understand village life of farming and third, there was no dowry. Marayi feels Saroja is as useless as a pretty picture hanging on a wall. She is just good to look at.
One of the visiting women gossiped, ‘As soon as he got a wife, he made an enclosure for her to bathe in. All these days, he had a mother. She never got a private spot like this.’
‘Can a mother and wife ever be equal?’ retorted another woman.
The book is translated from Tamil (Tamizh) by Aniruddhan Vasudevan. He had also translated Perumal’s award-winning book Madhurobaagaan into English. Perumal’s writing is rich with regional accents and simple in its narration but complex in highlighting the nuances of mundane lives. Have you read his books?