As much as I love Twitter, and I do, it’s one failing is that it’s easy to lose sight of tweets that deserve to be remembered. Like a set of tweets that was posted by Genderlog India about gender stereotypes in Indian textbooks. So, lest I forget, here’s a copy-paste collection of those tweets by Genderlog India.
The common biases & stereotypes of our society are reinforced by our textbooks: Religion, region, caste, class & of course GENDER.
Seemingly innocuous. Some examples of GENDER stereotypes in primary textbooks of most publishers. No names. Most have such stuff.
Social Studies/EVS – “My father is the head of the family. Mother looks aftr us Grandpa takes me to th market. Grandma tells me stories.”
Maths: “Arun scored 85%. Mini scored 72%. Who scored more marks? Mrs Sharma’s salary is Rs 20,000. Mr Sharma’s is Rs 35,000.”
Science: “We need water to drink.” Visual – boy drinking water. “We need water to wash clothes.” Visual – girl washing clothes.
English / other lang Readers: “I am Anuj. This is my sister Asha.” Never – “I am Asha. This is my brother Anuj.”
English/other lang Readers: “Teacher: What would you like to be when you grow up? Mala – I … a teacher. Manu – I…a doctor”
These books sell in lakhs per class, per major publisher. Year on year. Think how they reinforce, reiterate gender stereotypes/biases.
Meanwhile, as I’ve been typing, Iran suffered the worst earthquake in its recorded history. It’s the second Iran has had in the past ten days and this time, tremors were felt in Dubai, UAE, Pakistan and in northern India. The day began with news of two bomb blasts at the Boston marathon, the oldest in America.
It’s one of those days when whining about how terribly life treats you is a little insensitive and entirely too self-obsessed, unless of course you live in Khash. So I will gracefully exit and go follow the news obsessively instead.