Uberoi2 - 204-IJoni-w1iifiuiam" ‘" menace to...

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Unformatted text preview: 204-IJoni-w1iifiuiam "' ‘ " menace to the'he'alth of even-the putest'woinen’ (Str'i dha'pna; November "1921: 18)=.fDr't.‘ 'MuthnlakShmi' Reddi', :a-'p1jominent n'ieifriber'of théWIA, the Britiéh '_SOCihl Hygiene ‘COii't'lCll‘fflld the: first- female 'MLC -'in-" the Madras “Legislature; arguéa that-pioStitution constitnted a menace _to-'child'ren":and _ that thei‘mOthei’s of the fade could not tolerate'pl'aces' that wereeentres Of morai--md'- physical disease” (Sn-t dim-1w,- Noyemb'er' 1928:'1).“-*13dy I-Ii'rabai Tata', in her‘ Presidential'Addressf‘to'theiAIWC in 1930; lauded the social -‘?pur’ityeff0rtsr that‘wete being made‘ to ‘deal'with' commerbialised orostitu- ‘ non-Which has been increasing to an alarming extent; particularly in major cities" ,FZ-f" He'i‘ " " :{5 ":E‘ " ‘ ., ' '- . . I ' ' The Child Marriage‘Restraint-Aot of 1929 was'pasSed on 1- October 1929, and” came'into effect-six months late'f'on 1--'April 1930-. TheAIWC and WI-A I referred'toiith'e5pa5siiig7oftitheéAct-as a- *perSonal txiumph3', since-f-they had '-tp'resentedf- ifietitifinsi and .sent delegations: to member's:E of-‘the-iiAssembly, pte'sent‘ed eitiden'c'e beforethe' ‘Joshi' Committee, petitioned theE Viceroy, and Organised-public meetings in Tsu'p'port-of'the SardaiA'c'ts(AIWC 1928: '75—‘49; Forbes-19812563; Stri'dharma; November-1928); The ACt-“forb'ade-all ‘ 'futtirernai-riageS-of'girls below 14 and'bOys'bel'ow 18, bnt'did not-invalidate -= of'pe'n'aliSei'existin'g early marriages: It provided that punishments-of a fine of Rs'i':'-1;000 ojr-one-3’-mofith’s>impfisOnment=were:reqnired upon 'convic'tion of-a hu‘sba‘ndbver» 21 ;-th'e-male parentortgnardian'of the child-spouse; and thei‘p‘erson who"’conducted"the- marriage ceremony (Strii'dhar'm'a, October_ - 31928: 7258):?A‘ husba'ndsunderi 21: and‘any :woman‘ defendant-could be fined, “but in'o'tsiimpfisonediKRathbone' 1934: 44) The "Act- also-“specified that '-pi'osecution“s .oo'uld Only Be :initiated' by Iooinplaint from a_ pu’vate' citizen testifying «before-é':a= Preéidencyi or"-Distri'ct' Ma'gis'trate’s='C_ourt,' "and not by "theioour'té themSelv"e's. ‘ ‘ i": 5-' 53' 'r - : Byi1931?;the-Census:Reportsindicated-that-the'ACtWas "a dead letter’in niosts.provinces-i .(Rathbone‘. 19349 ’19}: Difficulties in. enforcing the: Act ihcltided"the3pfivate character of-‘theroffenceg-the difficulty of» ascertaining '-thet~a'ge' bf; git-Is due-itotriniperfect‘birth~.registration,='.and- especially the reluctance "of-2 wives; their parents or. :friends “to register: a complaint due to the'social boycott that-:‘mightv-folloW; By‘tAugust519'32,’ two and-oneE-half -- f'Bj’critioally? intefiogating 'the’Fdiscours'e" o'n unresp'eetable‘ -wo'men,-I do not mean- to ifn‘ply :: that: prostitution :does , not-qepresent: an} extreme tom; of; the: poinmodifiéation of 3 female _- sextant» Marc Hitter-5mm Dir-:rthdi‘s tiews isin 1.19! emphasis 99 ¥§PI¢S§ingProstitutittn. Modernising. the “motherhood archetype years after the Act was passed, thetewere atota1 of _1,"I3._p1joseentionsl,.of which Only 167 Were snooegssful. 'In.;Beng'al;_2‘Whighfii'eportétlly_l'had the highest incidence of catty martiagfiszi,‘._'there:_:§tt‘ete onlyi'fotty_:one, caSes'. Indeedfihere appears to:.hayebeen.an'iinoreaseiinear ‘ ' H monthsqbefore the __'pa_s$age_ [and i_1fipletnentat censns_.showed that .wiyes under; 15; incl-ea g1 1929 and .1931, while the gate” of: poonlation 'inotease'. for? "the same period was only. _1D,-6‘_p‘er (Em-175F617 the majorityOfi'yonngzwonien . Marriage. Beatraint Act'hadlittle amelioratiye"_ _ _ '_ I, c : Class-,respeotability,‘ motherhood andi'fiotion} '7 What-isione tofjnakeiofa refonnwhiohhadifew and yet was so hill :of metaphoricallgestnresl The faillntetoyimplement legal reforms for WQmen during the Ifidépétldénce péricftdlha'S: be?“ étt'ri-Z bored to the urban, elite cOnstituency' and personnel Of the early 'women’o organisations (Forbszs 1981;..Lidd19.andJoshi- 1986)tn¥¢.t.theizrichtwss of significationsr surrounding ‘- thes'e reforms suggests, that beyon'clén‘ler'e“ the-- toxic, theyisignallxed; also theioentity _of':a- class, In theflnfitit'ing's“oijyoinen’s 9rgani$att0ttaevidehce tattle JoshilCQinmittee,.9fid‘tef9rmeréf tie-map“ edi.t9ria'1§a.the Si,g'9ifi99ti09 0f th9.ivéiiiati’.s;bddifa$=natioli was, hightigtgted in. a .medipalisetl forni. ,The {ideal of scientifically: e'glnoated‘niotherhood- connected the moral regulation of femalesefitiality, 'irppotjtantotqpatri- lineal family structure, to new patterns of bodily control. In ltheV'Age of Consent Cthnittce- Repprts. with the. exceptiqn of that, f_r9th_a_tdra.s,-.the- regulation. ofproper feminine-roles morally adjudicated not thijongh the ,réligimis autliority (Pf-'shastric texts; but by. the-gauthqrity'of-.an;appatéht1x naturalisticinfidiéat and eugenittist Sciettce-thidnatt ide'ai'i‘rtmthfiri 99311.9! just icpt'i .Of traditionbu'tfalso educated. and 'iaqderh; andllpngetledusation ' 9f. .gitt'sf #9911999; til-19¢:- age? tot. matriag9-, AiMadréS 'MitJfJaYaka'r; graphically expressedithe new divisidr'i tented; £91991? thilcthoqdjaait adalthstttslthat wash?»ng legally Hearted: 31136 ..Pf9P¢t{Placfl of; .a twelve: yeaftold- girl"; he said; ‘ie in school,:jnot,_in.a yinarriage” e,d:’,_(St ‘ dhormo; dichotomi of What's. pr ,PTQStitUIF’Se- In tm99trrcf9nn; swat,itig‘.s,v;0.t this. ’ 9990531? tfisideal femintnéfisttré. anti attueiréfititsentatitaof emttgifttg State Was. ;th¢-- tcsptetébléhsélfvsficrificifié matth and Wifetgalbeit tottel edhcatedgs95159691115119 matters_-o£;:homé’sci¢nc§ and; hygiene',, andiffmfi tr-Qm theFP'HStIaihtii-bfPttfdaha trait! mattiégé; anti-bans 9n widow re?- niaiftiage,. Eli-oniitheémiorocosna ofthe'home to the. macroecsm Qf-the zetr/Jssa‘wsssssis ,_ as as inserts iip'roductiyef attendant-attain; the impure '- _ “ise'di the figure" orithé’pgtig'titfit'e wasfexcludedf ___ __ alisieid‘the role'bfmotherhodd,.Zréitere :::c'odes‘ o'f‘ re‘sp table "versus nnresPectablE' sciiuality 'i‘t‘h'at socially- otgéni'sbdt ‘1 “rent women ;t-hro_ii1gh"thei'r‘ transients-11+ ships-to men in patrllineal societies. ‘Ediicatedfenlig‘htened andrespectable mathéréfwétg' t p‘e- tse-answer” id ’a'fta'riéty of héai‘th’ and socialpiobiems, a Viewfirst‘prdpbufided’in its1929s-i5y‘the;WI'A'anacontitiuedtn the 1930s by the AIWC. Explanationsint-maternaland infant mortality 'wiaré‘éo'tight in women’s illiteracy and lack _of hygienic knowledge, and in the case of working women, in theirneglect of children. This was reflected in 19305’. legislation PIthbiFingWOmCll; .frgnt worldngi-ineminesa: as .mining'ln Particular and factory, work _in general were _viewed. as impairing women’s child- rearing capacities, :For the in the :19305, continuinghigh rates __of Rgtsjtt‘y'weis tng'iight‘t'b ejtfiaiii1y’t'heresuit'ortraditignsfishi sad-sates- . 0r_ eXariiple,-9__tlie Sahib: Sof Bhopal; . fitesi-aetttiaraad‘ies to the:'se'cond"sessi_on76f the AIWC, argued: assess ‘toieducatiion and‘hygienicknowled'ge =‘é.ym1itili&hl1y‘detiiiéd' the-thew- ;réSii’él=talzl¢’ niii'mdiéi‘iis'él'ffiTh - ' '- he of mother’s petiyajsi nation generates” 'qdhtifiai_dég.*§yt66011c‘- distinCtions' betweenliirb'" newsstand ow “' ” " between’z'cOlpniser.and I _ 'filonised E'ii'itl‘iout; s -theiriiotherhoo'drsymbol" as continually? itsntagc’,'v'é.‘tiatticiE dfifisgtfth'i's' period;1"= - - l .7 3 5 There were exceptions to this general pattern. Several-:members'of-the Age strongest-eon e-'sweatingstatisticallytsst 'a'mtt'titasr'ttaaan actions. :Yet asrd‘e‘ from the occasron'al reference'tossdacea girls as‘ Vietiins’ tattit'sl woman "within__ India d ~ assailant Modernising the motherhood archetype! 207 of unscrupulous traffickers ordeviant parents, the image of the working- class and unchaste unmarried girls was either absent, or was presented as a marginal,'fallen figure on- the other sideofcthe law. ‘ _ . _ . _, r_ _ _ . In men of competing nationalisms’throughout .the world, the metaphor of the woman’s-body-as nation valorised'o'nly.certain-roles-for women;-with' otherfeminine identities being devalued"or’marginalised;'(Mosse' 1985). The-fiction that family and-home Weré'r’ni-(il’qccmmswof the nation imbued the domestic .sphe_re__ iii-[each nationalism! with. the imagerygof: cultural defence against 3- outsiders',- and .hence- pulled" the- imagery: of motherhood intothe'diSCOUrse of health; progress-andjmodernityfir“' " " " '- - - ' Despite 'm'any‘Cultural differences, the‘”'resemblances'betweEnfyarious nationalist idealisations pf motherhood reflect similar? underlying "structures ofhabitus. Initiationalist movementsand State organisations.-ianritain,the- US, India and Japan, the role for women encouraged .through-..policy, propaganda- and " legislation "in the early '-20th - century was primarily that: of reproducing future citizens of "the race’. This policymodel differedslitghtly according to _specific nationalexigenciesandtraditions} Iii Britlai'iiiand'the' US; mothercraft and female suffrage'were seenas mutually'cornpatihle Ina Japan ‘-the goodwife and wisesmother’ constructionof the Meiji and Shown,- governments disallowed women’s political participation but==valuedtheir '7 productive-and 'SaVings'rolesr-These weres'een as contributing to induSti‘iai' and military .DIPFlQIFliSQfiOfih{Milli}??? 19.913 ; N01,“: find lflil-Sil‘lgéé 151771), .Y_c_t,_a_ll.the mOdClS of. motherhood cenyerged inthetpremisehtha‘tl the major roleoffemalesexuality was familial repro'duction,;and,_that it was as hygienically aware methers that women provided-their- major con- tribution"'to the 'prtigr'essiiof the nation. ‘Tliefimage'of ~'ideal_ motherhood ' fissuresluthc .PlliPtltl’T"isliliénilof, the? middiéclassé fans by? lihklhg‘ fills": - mom-regulation of feminine sexuality,"s'o" import‘ant‘tothe‘guestion of inheritance, to-new, medicalised norms of bodily,regulation.- ;-;- . - InIndia; between._,the-late 19th “century'and: the‘=.193t)s, the {mode-of: controlling women’s sexuality appearedto have changed from a religious to a. medicated"pattern. as- Blahlalnical landed elites“ i‘bst' influsnée to a rising nationalist and-reformist artist; initiate [ct-ass; This change" in the pattern of bodilytregulation, howeyer., Was-not accompanied-Hy. the erasure of gender and class distinctions. The ideal feminine.citizenwas-still- to be a self-sacrificing, chaste and-loyal mother; whose familial‘virtue linked her'to‘- the _vittuej'tif the nationalist -¢attse.__ Hematite Symbolism‘offen’ialerespect- ability, Which insaahificaflilsxfitsiséd thatclaSS-t rentals; bistaeéaaemenl remained largely'unchanged in the emerging Indian state. Since. class and :_ gender-.habitustis' formedathroughebodily technologiesoperating-uncon- sciOusly through daily practice? the eugenic and medical-justifications for motherhood m‘iiintainedthes‘e' cities“andgenderdistinctions‘well into the post-colonial period; ' 208i JUDY WHITEHEAD AIWC.1926—1931.Annual 'reports'LiNesv'DelhifAIWC Library.--" - 3 - » .. l Amrita bazaar patrika.-‘1925—1929‘.--An- English-language dailypublishcd in Calcutta: -. . ANDERSON, W. 1992.- Where every prospect pleases and only man is vile: Laboratory medicine as . .' colonial discourse.-Critica_l inquiry 18: 506-29. ARNOLD, D. 1993. 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