Swaroop C H

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Street Harassment

16 Jul 2005

This is one of those things that nobody is willing to talk about, but something has to be done about it.

Jasmeen Patheja has started the Blank Noise project to address street harassment, commonly known as eve teasing.

More information is in this Deccan Herald article.

If you think eve teasing doesn't happen and you want to turn a blind eye towards it, read about Hemangini's experience in a train to Chennai, and think again.

(via Viju)

Update: I never knew eve teasing was an India-specific term.

Comments

Aarthi says:

Incidentally, one of the comments in Hemangini's post addresses her experience as "Project Scream". I have a feeling that Hemangini's approach would make a bigger impact than the Blank Noise project.

PKG says:

Etymology of Eve-teasing :
Wikipedia entry:
via: Roshan

Swaroop says:

@Aarthi: Hemangini's "approach" was responding to the situation which is quite appropriate, but Jasmeen's approach is sensitizing people and making them aware of the reality, to _prevent_ such things from happening. I don't see how you can compare the two.

@PKG: OMG, I never knew it was an India-specific term!

Angel says:

very interesting link, thanks!

Oh, it does happen.A lot.

Aarthi says:

Swaroop, after the Sarika Shah case in Chennai (read the Wiki link, it mentions the incident), I've seen dozens of such approaches directed at bringing down eve-teasing. My own school started something pompous and showy to prove no point. Either they were conceptually unappealing and half baked or just didn't help anyone in the long run. Frankly, I don't think White Noise Project will go a long way in making people aware of the problem. Education must start earlier, maybe at school level. That is the only way to cure the problem.
IMO, people abroad don't find this a huge problem probably because they are brought up with the notion that it's absurd to comment on someone on the basis of their appearance. No wonder "eve-teasing" is India specific.

jasmeen says:

hey!

no one seems to really know how the term 'eve teasing' emerged

aarthi could you talk about some of the approaches that failed while you were in school?

Aarthi says:

Approach 1: Plain-clothes police women stationed at bus stops near schools/colleges. These women were to catch those who teased women waiting there.
Why/How it failed : In the beginning, there was a huge show of strength. I could really see these police women at work. Gradually, the number of women stationed at these places dwindled, the timings changed and in a few months everything came to a screeching halt.

Approach 2: Handing out pamphlets which read "Eve-teasing is a crime. Let's fight against it." and similar slogans.

Why/How it failed : It just never worked, just like any other pamphlet ditribution system.

Approach 3: Rallies. A crowd of us taking the roads for 2 hours on certain saturdays. Lots of banners - human chains at the beach

Why/How it failed : The people participating in the rallies got mocked at and eve-teased.

Sriram says:

I can understand why Approach 1 & 2 failed- but the outcome of Approach #3 - wow. I'm stunned

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