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image Status and Role of Women

“No country can ever truly flourish If it stifles the potential of its women and deprives itself of the contributions of half of its citizens.”

-Michelle Obama

As far as time has witnessed Male supremacism can be considered a pandemic of its own, with cases of inequality, abuse, assault and many other prejudices against women. The creation of Patriarchy certainly didn’t exist from the beginning, since most prehistoric societies were relatively egalitarian. Moving through history, the work of Aristotle illustrated women as morally, intellectually, and physically inferior
to men. He saw women as the property of men, claiming that women’s role in society was to reproduce and serve men in the household. Gerda Lerner, the author of The Creation of Patriarchy, states that Aristotle believed that women had colder blood than men, which made women not evolve into men, the sex that Aristotle believed to be perfect and superior.

Aristotle had a hierarchical ruling structure in his theories. Lerner claims that through this patriarchal belief system passed down from generation to generation, people have been conditioned to believe that men are superior to women. These symbols are benchmarks that children learn about when they grow up, and the cycle of patriarchy continues much past just the Greeks to the somewhat recent
Lahore Incident.

Hafsa: How common are such cases in Pakistan
The Pakistan Tiktoker’s assault case shines more light on the systemic patriarchal oppression that risks the safety of women all over the world, with cases of sexual assault, harassment and even death and abductions of women making daily headlines. According to reports, it has been said that 93% of Pakistani women have experienced some form of sexual violence in public spaces in their lifetime. Data presented by the Central Ministry of Human Rights in Pakistan shows that gender-based violence has declined by 70% in the past three years, although the
on-ground reality begs to differ. According to the International Labour Organisation, Pakistani women travelling in public are susceptible to verbal and physical harassment by pedestrians, passengers, drivers and bus conductors. Following the days of the Independence Day episode at Pakistan’s historic Minar-e-Pakistan, another similar case surfaced. A video emerged online, showing a woman being cat-called, harassed and molested by men on the streets. The woman was travelling in a rickshaw with a rather young child and attempting to defend themselves from the ambush.

Hafsa: Media’s portrayal of women:
With the prevalent growth of the Internet, it seems as if this cyberspace has become a breeding ground for people who believe in the subjugation of women and wish for Patriarchal dominancy. Social media sites are being used to gather a cult of misogynists who vehemently bond on their chauvinistic thoughts. Media plays a huge role in how women are depicted. Unfortunately, enough media portrayal of women has often been negatively stereotyping women into multiple roles the most prominent ones
showing women as sexual objects, or being shown as passive creatures that should bend to the will of men.

These portrayals influence how women are perceived by society. It prevents women’s abilities by limiting their choices and opportunities, which directly and indirectly causes an increase in gender and sexual violence. In a study on the sexualization of women in media, by the American Psychological Association, it was found that women or girls are more likely to be dressed provocatively for male validation and were forced into poses that suggest sexuality. Another study, on print media, completed by psychology researchers found that 51.8% of the time, women are objectified in advertisements. This number changed when the study was narrowed to men’s print, where women were objectified in an increased 76% of advertisements

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