India Women





Silenced by their culture large populations of women in India tolerate abuse and subsequent death because they have provided insufficient dowry. In a culture that is male dominated women are raised to be servants to their husbands often arranged to marry a man that they have never met. Women that are beaten or just unhappy must suppress their feelings to keep their husbands blissful or face shame and be turned away by their own families. Indian women’s household must pay a dowry for the privilege of marrying a man of status. The dowry often consists of money, merchandise, or gold that is displayed when the couple is married. Women are being mistreated for insufficient dowry money because the groom’s family may be greedy and would like more items. If the bride’s family cannot provide more for the in-laws they will kill her so that he may keep the dowry he already had collected and then marries another that may possess more money or status. The original dowry is determined by the perceived value of the husband’s hand in marriage. If the husband is very desirable then he commands a very high dollar figure, if the offer of money is too low then the groom’s family will not accept it because it is an insult.
“A woman held a PHD and married a man that was a shopkeeper with less education than she possessed. Her father provided a year’s worth of salary and many gifts. After the couple had been married six months, the in-laws requested a washing machine and other items that the bride’s family could not afford to give. They taunted the bride and eventually she was found hung from a ceiling fan. The groom was never convicted because he told the police she committed suicide, because she did not love him enough. Since the death took place in his home, they had no way of knowing if it was the truth. The woman was cut off from her relatives and had once asked her father to help her because she did not feel safe with her new husband. The father told her that she should give it time because he was not to intervene to early in the marriage, he wanted her to stay married at the time.” (Mandelbaum p.1)
Women in India marry within their own social caste which divides people into four major groups the Brahmin, kshatryia, vaishya, and the sudra with some of the lower people being called so the untouchables. The untouchables are called so dirty that even a glass that they have drunk from cleaned, will always be contaminated. Female babies are viewed as a burden to the father, that he must work and save to marry her off and males are always preferred. The birth of a girl is mourned in most families, which contributes to female infanticide in India today. (“India dowry” p67) The marriages that take place are all arranged and can take place even as children, teenagers, and twenty-year-old businessmen and women that has to yield to the practice in society. Women that do choose their own mates are not exempt from the dowry and often face anger from their parents or being disowned. Parents will often look for the most suitable mate for tier daughter in classified ads, Internet, or marriage brokers with out prior knowledge each other the bride and groom are married if the dowry is in agreement on both sides. In Hindu laws of Manu a woman is joined to her husband and has to suffer with him and act with tolerance, this religion believes that women are the cause if a marriage fails and that men are absolved from their own actions. If there is any unhappiness in the home of an Indian woman, they look at her as the cause even if the husband is in some cases beating, taunting and allowing his friends to gang rape her. These women have no choice but to stay in inhumane situations because they were raised in a culture that does not give them many rights and teaches them from an early age to be a servant. If an Indian woman needs help there are few places to which she can turn, the family of the groom will