Can’t buy me love?

All over the greater diaspora, Aunties bemoan that desi children are picky. How will they ever be satisfied? How will they ever settle down and start popping out the requisite grandkids?

Aunties can sleep better at night now that SCIENCE is on the job. Examining peoples’ behavior in online dating settings (which is equivalent to looking at biodata), they’ve noticed a few clear patterns:

Men are easy – they are generally interested in hotness above all.

Women are choosier, but it turns out their preferences are fungible. This is good news for aunties because it gives them a metric with which to translate different suitor’s attributes to a common scale, allowing them to rank apples and oranges. They can tell, for example, whether an average woman (in this study) is likely to prefer the not quite as handsome, shorter i-banker or the more gorgeous, slightly taller, high school English teacher.

What is this common scale? Money. According to these researchers, women will forgive men’s flaws if (gasp) they earn more.

Consider looks. A guy can compensate for ordinary looks with more moola, which tells us what he has to reveal in his biodata if he wants to be a playa:

Suppose you’re an ordinary-looking guy whose online picture is ranked around the median in attractiveness… And suppose you’d like to be as successful with women as a guy whose picture is ranked in the top tenth. Then you’d need to make $143,000 more than him. If your picture is ranked in the bottom tenth, you’d need to make $186,000 more than him. [Link]

Cash also acts like elevator shoes for our shorter brothers:

… a 5-foot-0 guy would need to make $325,000 more than a 6-foot-0 man to be as successful in the online dating market. [Link]

Race matters too. Generally speaking, men were more willing to date somebody of a different race than women, with the exception of Asian women who preferred White men over others. (3/4ths of Asian-white marriages have Asian women and white men [Link] )

For equal success with an Asian woman, an African-American needs no additional income; a white man needs $24,000 less than average; a Hispanic man needs $28,000 more than average. [Link]

It’s not clear whether brown women act like their other Asian counterparts – any thoughts?

Lastly, if you want to get around these sorts of hurdles, skip the biodata and move straight to cha:

… people who are terribly picky in choosing partners online will relax their standards if they spend just three or minutes talking to someone at a speed dating session. [Link]

There you go. Now that science has helped Aunties, maybe it will come up for a way for the rest of us to be able to evade them. Oh yeah, it’s called caller ID

In case you’re interested, here is the academic paper in question.

Related posts: Speed kills (part 1), Speed kills (part 2)

577 thoughts on “Can’t buy me love?

  1. In TN at least, most women won’t sit next to a strange man on a bus, train, whatever (for fear of being “corrupted”, I suppose). Having a whole side of the bus dedicated to ladies only seating eliminates this problem. I believe that’s the real origin of the practice, rather than to avoid “eve teasing.”

    Why do you assume this? Are you from TN? Were you told this is how the practice evolved? Any other Tamilians on here want to comment? They thought their pati-vrat-dharma would be broken if they sat next to another man or what?

    I’m not very familiar with Tamil Nadu, only been there once, so don’t know myself. As far as North India, sometimes there are separate seats on buses designated for “ladies”, most of the time not. When they are available, I’m grateful. I assumed it originated out of a desire from the women to not get felt up. Maybe I was wrong. Will research the phenomena.

    To all those who claim women are routinely sexually groped in india like everywhere on the streets, why dont you try out this controlled experiment for yoursefl if u r so confident? Make an attempt to touch (not even grope, since i know u are a good person) a random woman on the street and let me know how it turns out. I could place a good bet that, more likely than not that you’d get beaten up or sth (seriously, unless its in a really really crowded place where ppl are literally pushing each other for space and stuff.

    Some Indian women do indeed slap or beat up men who do that to them. Mostly though I’ve seen the following responses;

    a.) they ignore them and walk quickly away, or… b.) they admonish them verbally

    I’ve not actually seen anyone of them hit the men physically.

    When I was first living there, for about the first 3 – 5 years I did not know how to react myself. Especially in the beginning, when I did not know Hindi and was trying to conform to the local customs and habits so as to fit in and make my life go smoothly (big mistake), I always felt terribly scared and victimized, silenced and at a loss as to what to do, and not really having anyone to advise me on such things. I was intimadated for a good five years, I would say. Then I started fighting (physcially) back. Yeah, most of them ran away from me. But I’ve not seen any Indian women doing that (doesn’t mean they don’t, just means I have not seen yet). One girl in the street saw me fighting some guy and she said, “you’re doing what we wish we could”. Why she felt she couldn’t do the same, I don’t know.

    Like Runa says above, my experience also was that Delhi and the surrounding areas are the worst for this type of behaviour. Problem was I was living in that area for a decade. I think I’m hardened for life now.

  2. It just seems whenever this topic comes up, women yell “But they burn babies!” Those are crimes. Not patriarchy, crimes. murder.

    HMF:

    I think you should revisit your sentence above. Female foeticide is very much a part of patriarchy. Why else are only female fetuses aborted? Its an extension of considering females liabilities. Without patriarchy maybe they wouldn’t be seen as a burden but as significant contributors to society and their families. Even if they don’t work or bring in money, women even in their traditional roles would be seen as valuable.

  3. think you should revisit your sentence above. Female foeticide is very much a part of patriarchy

    Yes I understand, but there’s a huge difference between saying to your daughter, “You can’t stay out until 2 am with your new boyfriend, wearing a rubberband around your waist” and “you will not live because you dont have a dick” I’d say a whole lot more than patriarchy is responsible for the horrendous crimes committed. Thats what I meant by the statement. There’s your revisitation.

  4. I really don’t understand the animosity towards PG here (barring any history she has with Sepia Mutiny which I am not aware of). She is a woman living in India but because she is White she can’t contribute anything of significance to this discussion. I may have been born in India but she has lived there longer than I have. I am not going to dismiss what she has to say simply because she isn’t ethnically Indian.

    And, Hema: do you have any other examples of how women are being coddled in India other than separate seats which you refuse to believe have much to do with eve teasing? Lets assume it is true that women are sitting apart from men to avoid being “corrupted” simply for sharing space — why don’t men have this same fear of being corrupted? A woman’s shame and honour is much more fragile in the Indian patriarchy. This is not a point to be so easily dismissed.

    I understand your point about chivalry being dangerous for equality. A point I agree with but a point that is more suited to the current American culture and not India.

    That doesn’t mean I think all women in India are oppressed and that women don’t have a role in this oppression but I believe your emphasis on women taking the easy way out is oversimplistic and removed from the dynamics of Indian society and the pressures women feel to stay away from men or to remain pure. Isn’t this concern/desire an extension of patriarchy?

  5. Mostly though I’ve seen the following responses;

    I’ve lived in (south) india for all my life (~> 2 decades from the point of birth except the past ~< a couple of years) If its a highly crowded situation, I’ll grant you I can imagine how someone gets away with groping a girl without any fear.

    BUT, I wont agree to that sort of a thing as a random public street scene. If someone attempts that, I repeat, you’ll likely be beaten up, by the passers by or something (maybe even the woman, as you urself pointed out), and considered insane, just like how you’d imagine such a scene would evolve on a US street. Perverts are not insane. So they wouldnt dare to do something like that in a non-discreet situation in full public view. nope no way. Sorry PG. You are just lying if you deny what I wrote above…

  6. Chill, thanks for sticking up for me. I’m warmed.

    I understand your point about chivalry being dangerous for equality. A point I agree with but a point that is more suited to the current American culture and not India.

    If opening doors or showing other simple courtesies on a date is considered “chivalry”, I’m all for it. I don’t feel that’s dangerous for equality. If my boyfriend takes pride in being able to “provide” some things for me, or to “protect” me from danger, I welcome it. I don’t “need” that from him, but I appreciate the gesture and attitude behind it. Similarly, I do things for him he doesn’t need either, but he appreciates the thought behind them.

    I do agree with Hema to some extent that women in India are culpible to some degree in there own bondage — but I don’t see separate bus seats as part of that.

    Women of India tolerate alot of BS from men that they wouldn’t have to if they just stood up for themselves more and risked their reputations a little.

  7. BUT, I wont agree to that sort of a thing as a random public street scene. If someone attempts that, I repeat, you’ll likely be beaten up, by the passers by or something (maybe even the woman, as you urself pointed out), and considered insane, just like how you’d imagine such a scene would evolve on a US street. Perverts are not insane. So they wouldnt dare to do something like that in a non-discreet situation in full public view. nope no way. Sorry PG. You are just lying if you deny what I wrote above…

    Hold on a minute here…… I’m lying if I don’t have the same experience as you??? WTF?

    I was molested almost every single day of my life in North India. Nobody, I repeat, NOBODY came to my defense. Only after a decade of that crap did I finally defend myself.

    South India may be different. However, when an old man with a cane groped my ass on a Chennai bus while i was standing up on it (no seats available) and I turned around and slapped his ugly, wrinkled face… and slapped it hard and loud… the people on the bus were shocked at me and young women were laughing at me.

    How dare you say I’m lying.

    Back off buster.

  8. PG have you ever considered the proposition that you were targeted for molestation BECAUSE you were white?

    Hell yeah, I considered that. Until I talked to my Latina and Black sisters and other Indian women around me. Conclusion was Indian women get molested alot, foriegners slightly more.

    The very dark black women (non-Indian) got molested slightly less, but hassled just the same.

  9. since we’re on the anecdotal track here…

    my mother did her advanced Bharatanatyam studies in Chennai in the seventies…no molestation.

    She frequently makes trips back to Chennai…no molestation…

    i think people are reacting to PG in the way that they are because anecdotal arguments only hold up to the next anecdotal argument like one eye witness can contradict another. My saying that there was no molestation problem, based on personal experience, isn’t a good argument even if it’s true.

  10. lived with my mother back in the early 90s (for a few month-long chennai trip). no molestation. extensive use of public transport.

    what’s my point?

  11. muralimannered: lived with my mother back in the early 90s (for a few month-long chennai trip). no molestation. extensive use of public transport.

    Im glad your mom didn’t get molested ever. My mother, aunts, cousins, and I were not as fortunate as her. I took a Hindi class at UC Berkeley once and a British girl in the class asserted that she felt she got molested more because she was White. All the Indian girls in the class were enraged. Their experiences were no different and resented the White woman for assuming she was “favored” for molestation because she was White.

    Either way, PG is right. Molestation is rampant especially in North India.

  12. PG:

    If opening doors or showing other simple courtesies on a date is considered “chivalry”, I’m all for it. I don’t feel that’s dangerous for equality.

    I would have to respectfully disagree. I believe courtesy on both sides is good for everyone involved but chivalry assumes the woman “needs” it. That doesn’t mean my boyfriend can’t open a door for me but he doesn’t have to. If I get to the door first I’ll open it and if he does, he will. Neither one of us runs to open the door for the other.

    Once on a subway, two men (one drunk) got into a fight because the drunk wanted a gentleman to give me his seat. I couldn’t for the life of me understand it. I’m young and healthy. We get up to give our seats for the elderly and disabled. I resent being in the same category simply because of my gender.

  13. Hold on a minute here…… I’m lying if I don’t have the same experience as you??? WTF?

    oh ok. maybe all those perverts and creeps who otherwise randomly keep grabbing women everywhere on the streets oh so publicly go and hide in the pot holes on hte road when I’m out in the public?

    Funny thing, not many others I know either, think they see things like that going on as fearlessly as u potray in public view (I already granted you crowded situations where free movement is impossible, so dont fire me on that ok?)

    Anyone else here who can vouch for casually sighting some pervert monkey guy gleefully popping up and grabbing women’s asses and boobs on the street?

    Back off buster.

    ok, I’m not a pervert waiting to execute a virtual-grope on you or anything. Don’t worry. Peace.

  14. Im glad your mom didn’t get molested ever

    sarcasm, a bit? if you really feel this is an epidemic–go do some kind of work to make it an empirically-proved fact rather than just an oft-cited, anecdotal problem!

    If you don’t have time for that quaint old concept of empirical inquiry–make an inflammatory documentary highlighting the daily molestation of women!

    do something!

  15. Totally disregards the point about men being trained to feel superior, before they even start shaving. Children, whether they’re male or female need to be taught right from wrong, from the beginning.

    I agree with your point that boys are “trained” from a very young age that they are superior in some way and that often women are behind this training. But, lets not forget that these women were girls once themselves and they were “trained” they are inferior. When you and Amitabh yourself have admitted that it is too easy not to fight your upbringing, why assume it is easy for the women to do so? Admitedly, the men benefit from not fighting back while the women would benefit from doing so, but it is nonetheless oversimplistic to think even those taught to be “inferior” will magically fight back when they get older. Without the the social support and relevant structures in place this is not so easy. Otherwise, it would be very hard for instance to maintain a caste system. Those subjegated and opressed would simply refuse to take it.

  16. Murilimannered and random:

    Do a google search for eve teasing and see for yourself. PG and I are not the only ones ever affected by this.

  17. DG: Can you please respond to what I precisely wrote above? Show me one sentence(or more) I wrote where you think you disagree with me.

  18. PG,DG, whatever…

    empirical enquiry usually involves citing peer-reviewed academic sources or developing a study of your own (or a combination of both)

    there are at least as many articles about how “down-low” gay black men are causing an AIDS epidemic in straight black women, yet it’s a claim which is statistically false.

    can you supply an scholarly study supporting this oft written about theory of ‘eve teasing’ and it’s attendant effects?

    you would do a disservice to women in India by not substantiating your argument.

  19. I agree with your point that boys are “trained” from a very young age that they are superior in some way and that often women are behind this training. But, lets not forget that these women were girls once themselves and they were “trained” they are inferior. When you and Amitabh yourself have admitted that it is too easy not to fight your upbringing, why assume it is easy for the women to do so? Admitedly, the men benefit from not fighting back while the women would benefit from doing so, but it is nonetheless oversimplistic to think even those taught to be “inferior” will magically fight back when they get older. Without the the social support and relevant structures in place this is not so easy. Otherwise, it would be very hard for instance to maintain a caste system. Those subjegated and opressed would simply refuse to take it.

    This is exactly the point I made in another post wherein I gave my own cousin as an example of a bad marriage and victim of domestic violence. She had the social support and relevant structures in place that made it easy for her to walk out on her husband without worrying about what Lallu ke Baba down the street would say to her the next time she went to buy a bottle of Dettol from the family store.

    She also had the social support and relevant structures in place to enter into more functional intimate relationships after the divorce, one after another until she met her current husband.

  20. If you don’t have time for that quaint old concept of empirical inquiry–make an inflammatory documentary highlighting the daily molestation of women!

    They have the helmet cam, the buttom cam, the shirt cam, I’m sure they can come out with the ass cam soon enough.

  21. I agree with your point that boys are “trained” from a very young age that they are superior in some way and that often women are behind this training. But, lets not forget that these women were girls once themselves and they were “trained” they are inferior.

    Inferior to other men, not inferior to teenage boys 15 years their junior.

  22. empirical enquiry usually involves citing peer-reviewed academic sources or developing a study of your own (or a combination of both) there are at least as many articles about how “down-low” gay black men are causing an AIDS epidemic in straight black women, yet it’s a claim which is statistically false. can you supply an scholarly study supporting this oft written about theory of ‘eve teasing’ and it’s attendant effects? you would do a disservice to women in India by not substantiating your argument.

    Peer reviewed academic sources? To prove I was molested countless times in India? For what?

    can you supply an scholarly study supporting this oft written about theory of ‘eve teasing’ and it’s attendant effects?

    Nope. I don’t deal in “eve teasing”. I was sexually molested, not “teased”. But I am gonna write a book. You bet your sweet paccha I am!

    you would do a disservice to women in India by not substantiating your argument

    Indian women substantiate my arguments with their own experiences.

    And just because your mother’s tits didn’t get grabbed when as an older woman or a woman travelling in the company of a man, doesn’t mean they never got grabbed when she was young and single. Why would she tell you about it if it did happen?

    Since when are desi mothers comfortable talking about their sexual experiences (wanted or forced) with their children?

    Get real!

    How many women tell their kids they were molested or raped by their uncles? (in cases where that happens?)

    There is probably alot your mother does not share with you.

  23. there are at least as many articles about how “down-low” gay black men are causing an AIDS epidemic in straight black women, yet it’s a claim which is statistically false.

    Since when are statistics the whole truth anyway?

    Statistically 45 percent of South Indian women may have never been sexually harrassed.

    So what?

    I was one woman sexually molested almost daily in North India. That’s my reality. Not your’s, mine.

    Anyway, next time I’m in India I’ll holla atcha and you can come to where I am and see for yourself.

  24. not touching on your speculations about my mother which I find not in the least abhorrent and speculative to the point of inviting my very brown fist down your indignant craw, but I would point out that my mother is NOT Indian (your assumption #1) she actually DOES tell me about EVERYTHING that’s gone down because the ability to lie was beaten out of her by my grandfather–in fact i’ve heard nearly every story about “drunk-confused-uncle” that i can stomach (your assumption #2) and…guess what…my mother DOES substantiate alot of her arguments with empirically-sourced materials.

    too bad Karma Cola didn’t come out before you were molested by the nation of India.

    you could’ve caught a clue and not the plane.

  25. It’s that the Indian women who complain that they are subjugated by an overly patriarchal society also play their part in the subjugation, partly by allowing society to treat them in as paternalistic a way as possible.

    Nobody’s denying that fact that women play a part, but it’s a very small part.

    When I was in school (catholic), corporal punishment was an everyday thing. None of our teachers ever hit a girl, while the boys were slapped (and ‘caned’) at the slightest mistake. The girls had a free pass and they often exploited this ‘unfair advantage’ while the boys bore the brunt of the punishment. At that point, I used to think that the dice was heavily loaded in favor of girls. In every other aspect at our school, boys and girls were meted out similar treatment (save the corporal punishment). I used to question this differential treatment by our teachers, separate queues at railway reservation counters, bank-tellers, buses etc. I once stood up and asked a teacher to either slap everyone in the class or not slap at all. This was good enough reason for the teacher to beat the hell out of me. At that point, none of the girls stood up for me. These very girls used to debate voraciously on “equal treatment for boys and girls” but they never practiced it themselves. I was a bit naive then and had very little knowledge about the everyday “eve-teasing” (harassment) that most of the girls went through. Once I was made aware of this by my female friends, my attitude changed a lot and I started to see the other side of this story. The dice was in fact heavily loaded against the girls (save a few) and my ‘corporal punishment’ thing was a minor blip in this ugly picture.

  26. PG,

    typically i give acquaintances about 3 references to my mother before I fold their n-space into the nearest black hole available.

    you’re already on warning. don’t continue in this vein.

  27. Um, can you please enlighten me as to what I wrote that was insulting to your mother?

    That she may have been sexually harrassed as a youth and not told you about it? And how is it that you would construe that to be an insult to her and not the lowly haramzada who may have molested her? Don’t tell me you subscribe to the woman is always guilty theory?

    Sheesh.

  28. PG,

    you need to start writing a personal-issues blog. that will cut about half the bullshit from the comments section on posts like these.

    you are contributing to this discussion in much the same way as a rest-stop owner who pisses in the faces of thirsty passers-by.

    you were molested in northern india. fine. write about it elsewhere–in a forum where people can share similar experiences without being challenged by idiotarian, suckers for reason/logic/rational enquiry like myself.

    as to my mother, you insult her by insinuating that she would lie to me–lying is THE cardinal crime in my family.

  29. the problem with your method of argument is that it cancels out anybody else’s opinion.

    I could easily comment as a “long-time resident of xxxx portion of India” and say that all women i saw there simply invited groping hands and inspired lecherous acts. That’s just as bullshit as saying the opposite.

    substance makes arguments. not hot air.

  30. as to my mother, you insult her by insinuating that she would lie to me–lying is THE cardinal crime in my family.

    Just because someone does not tell you all the details of their life experience means they are lying?

    But you’re right….. the blog, the book, it’s all coming.

  31. PG. you’re in good form. You must have been training in some kind of camp in vienna or something.

  32. brown_fob if it makes you feel any better my brown ass got wooped at Convent school in India ALL the time :-) It might have something to do with me being a bully and the leader of a pack of utter rats but I’m a girl and the nuns hated me! We didn’t get caned. I got hit on the knuckles about 50 times. Makes for very strong knuckles to knock unruly boys out :-)

    Um, can you please enlighten me as to what I wrote that was insulting to your mother?

    And just because your mother’s tits didn’t get grabbed when as an older woman or a woman travelling in the company of a man, doesn’t mean they never got grabbed when she was young and single. Why would she tell you about it if it did happen?

    PG when you talk about someone’s mama’s tits being grabbed in a crude context it’s open season to have some of the reaction you got come your way.

    FYI when my mother was old the sort of rampant sexual molestation really didn’t happen. She open admits it was a different world than the girls are subject to today and doesn’t mean she disregards women getting molested today. Not everyone’s mama’s had to have their tits grabbed. And actually if that happened to my mama she’d definitely tell me that!

  33. I really don’t understand the animosity towards PG here (barring any history she has with Sepia Mutiny which I am not aware of).

    Like my Grandmother said, “Beta, don’t comment on things which you don’t know. Because you don’t know.”

    She is a woman living in India but because she is White she can’t contribute anything of significance to this discussion.

    No, she can’t contribute anything of significance because she has exhausted her credibility. She gets banned, she changes her name/IP comes back…repeat cycle. Add to this her (albeit now toned down) tendency to try and out-Indian desi people and many of us tired of being lectured by someone who claimed to know all, especially how much it all sucked.

    I may have been born in India but she has lived there longer than I have. I am not going to dismiss what she has to say simply because she isn’t ethnically Indian.

    You are in good company then.

  34. BUT, I wont agree to that sort of a thing as a random public street scene.

    Random – I’ve also read accounts from Indian women which were similar, although I cannot attest to the frequency. This was about a middle class woman having her breasts grabbed as she crossed a bridge. I also know that in Delhi many of my relatives were told not to take the bus for fear of getting groped. I’m not agreeing with PG, but I’m not about to dismiss her experiences as totally idiosyncratic either.

  35. And, I have a question;

    If statistically in UP less women than more get molested in public, does that mean I got molested less than I did?

    I don’t exactly know where you are going with this statistic thing….

    All I know is that I was sexually harrassed countless times and it sounds to me like you are saying I wasn’t. Okaaaay. Whatever.

  36. I’m not agreeing with PG, but I’m not about to dismiss her experiences as totally idiosyncratic either.

    There’s nothing to “agree” or “disagree” about. I’m stating the facts of my personal experiences with sexual harrassment. How could anyone say, “no, I don’t agree that happened to you”??? Where is the room for agreeing or disagreeing when someone tells you what happened to them personally?

  37. now that you’ve undoubtedly belabored to death your point about being harassed/molested, can we get to the point: is this an epidemic/societal problem? If so, where? how? to what extent? how can it be solved?

    if all you’re going to do is simply restate your personal experience, DO IT ELSEWHERE!!!!

  38. Murali,

    She did provide a link to a major movement, organized by Indian women, against sexual harassment.

    PG -

    By agreeing I meant agreeing that your experiences were representative. The story I offered in support of your personal experiences.

    I’ve been meaning to write about the blank noise project for some time, and hopefully I’ll get to it later this week, but things are busy in the bunker.

  39. long on anecdotal observations, short on science. societal change cannot be founded on such shaky foundations.

    in fact, it looks like a blog-length set of ramblings rather than anything any rational human being could cite in an argument.

    this is empirical. that blog is not.

  40. Murali, statistics are based on personal experiences.

    The personal experiences are the statistics.

    These women in India are raising awareness about the issue and more women are speaking up about it. More numbers. More statistics.

    What else do you suggest? Interviews? They are doing them.

    Rallies? That’s going on?

    Shaming of the perpetrators? Also happening.

  41. Inferior to other men, not inferior to teenage boys 15 years their junior.

    HMF:

    Thats a silly point. Women like your aunt were raised to think men/boys are special and so you treats you as such. Much more so than she would treat a girl. That is the point I was making. This is a silly response.

    Also, to the following

    but there’s a huge difference between saying to your daughter, “You can’t stay out until 2 am with your new boyfriend, wearing a rubberband around your waist” and “you will not live because you dont have a dick” I’d say a whole lot more than patriarchy is responsible for the horrendous crimes committed.

    The two things you mentioned are definately related. Why can’t a girl stay out till 2 am? She might be seen with boys? She might have sex with boys? She might get pregnant? Those are all important concerns but then why aren’t we concerned that a boy might have sex, might get a girl pregnant, might have his reputation ruined. Becuase, well, the latter simply doesn’t happen to the same extent to boys and because pregnancy only affects the girl and the boy isn’t held with the same responsibility/shame. Now, when you have such a lopsided system of responsibility and shame and a parent finds out they have a daughter they think, “Oh shit I have to deal with all that shit when I could have a boy who will carry on my name, take care of me, AND not be a social liability not to mention I won’t have to pay a dowry? These are all related. Foeticide is a horrible extention of patriarchy and opression.

  42. Blank Noise Project is actually a social movement – it’s woman who organize in cities across India to confront public sexual harassment or “eve teasing”. The fact that such a movement exists suggests that there is a problem. I agree that it is not a random sample, but it does indicate the depth of frustration with this issue if women organize in this fashion. Incidentally, they also videotape and photograph men who harass, which shows you how blatant the behavior by some is.

    The Blank Noise Project is a community-public art project that seeks to confront street harassment, commonly known as eve teasing, in India…. The project works with the victims, the perpetrators and spectators of street sexual harassment and hopes to bring a change in the public perception of eve teasing, which is still largely considered a minor problem. [Link]

    If you have any studies to suggest on sexual harassment in India, I would be happy to read them but it’s disingenuous to suggest that because there isn’t a study on the level of the Nurse’s Health Study, that it doesn’t exist. I’ve blogged several times on domestic assault, both in India and Bangladesh, which is a serious problem. here are the numbers from the studies:

    37.2% of women in India who have been married have experienced spousal violence. [Link]

    Certainly, it’s a different problem, but when it’s that frequent, it makes the allegation of lesser forms of physical violation more plausible.

  43. In the context of TN, i am very willing to believe that such molestation is a daily occurrence suffered by any woman in a public space. Tamil machismo is not an oft-studied concept and it is certainly plausible that this machismo and chennai society create an environment in which this phenomenon can thrive.

    I do however, need more than a blog to present such a cause to my friends and family (some of whom live in chennai), for their support. It’s no indictment of the verity of the phenomenon you speak of, it’s simply REALITY.

  44. Al Mujahidini for Ananda Bindu Electronic Experience PG at your service - even, only and always! Fem on said:
    I was molested almost every single day of my life in North India.
    Hard to believe.

    Hard even for me to believe! I don’t even want to believe a place is that far gone… imagine what it did to my faith in humanity at large.

    Anyway, whatever.

    Still willing to open my heart to a genuine and sincere man, Al Muhajid…