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Women's Day 2014 - Interviews

Celebrating International Women’s Day at Parinita!

At Parinita, we aim to represent the women of today – women, who are proud of who they are, who embody modesty and humility, yet are unapologetic achievers. This week, we feature several such women, who tell us about what it means to them to be a woman.

Here's Arpita Dasgupta, a school teacher from Kolkata, sharing her views with us...


Arpita_Dasgupta

 

Q: What are the top 3 ways in which you would like to be defined?

Arpita: A lady with a mind of her own, a mother, a good friend.

Q: Do you think it is possible for a woman to be both modern and traditional?

Arpita: Definitely! Modernity emerges from values grounded in tradition. The present has no future without the past.

Q: One incident/instance where you felt proud to be a woman.

Arpita: When I gave birth to my daughter.

Q: How often do you wear a sari? How do you feel when dressed in a sari?

Arpita: Frequently. I'm at my feminine best in a sari.

 Q: One piece of advice that you want to give to young women today.

Arpita: The international look is achieved by embracing both the East and the West. Moreover, who can deny that the essence of an Indian woman's sensuousness is hidden within the folds of a sari?

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Continuing our celebration of Women’s Day, we asked Sudeshna Bhattacharya, an engineer and a favourite customer from Pune, to share with us her thoughts on being a woman.

Sudeshna_Bhattacharya


Q: What are the top 3 ways in which you would like to be defined?

Sudeshna: An individual with a mind of her own, sincere, trusted friend

Q: Do you think it is possible for a woman to be both modern and traditional?

Sudeshna: Though it may sound much like a contradictory thought, an individual can be both modern & traditional in her ways. She can always embrace modern ways by keeping her traditional values intact. In case there is a clash somewhere, she can make a choice on the basis of logic. 

Q: One incident/instance where you felt proud to be a woman.

Sudeshna: When I gave birth to my daughter :-)

Q: How often do you wear a sari? How do you feel when dressed in a sari?

Sudeshna: Very rarely...only on special occasions. I feel elegant and perfectly dressed in a saree.

Q: One piece of advice that you want to give to young women today.

Sudeshna: There is no need to do away with moral values to achieve things in life. Honest efforts never go unnoticed.

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Strong women inspire power in others. Our celebration of the upcoming Women’s Day features one such woman, Jasmine Pereira, an image consultant from Mumbai, who discusses with us her views on womanhood.

Jasmine_Pereira


Q: What are the top 3 ways in which you would like to be defined?

Jasmine:  I did like to be defined as a progressive thinker & a passionate learner; Successful women entrepreneur who envisions empowerment of any individual through Image enhancement; A people's person to whom relations matter & connections hold the key.

Q: Do you think it is possible for a woman to be both modern and traditional?

Jasmine: Of course we are both modern & traditional.  We are modern in our thinking but yet firmly rooted in traditional virtues. We can be dressed in modern attire but still live in an Indian joint-family setup. We could be dressed in a sari & yet be an expert at dining etiquette for Continental cuisine. If you go to a Fine Dining Restaurant today - you will find many sari-clad women. At the same time - before going to work many western attired women do their morning Puja as a traditional ritual.  A good balance is the key. Every woman becomes even more beautiful when she finds her own balance between the two worlds.

Q: One incident/instance where you felt proud to be a woman.

Jasmine: As a key note speaker at an event filled with 200 men. Felt proud, honored & privileged to be a woman. Receiving a standing ovation from the audience full of men was surely a memorable moment.

Q: How often do you wear a sari? How do you feel when dressed in a sari?

Jasmine: Occasionally when the event demands it. Especially for weddings. But when dressed in a sari - I feel grandeur, very elegant & glamorous. It makes me feel more vibrant because of the beautiful colors & accessories I team the sari with.

Q: One piece of advice that you want to give to young women today.

Jasmine: Be assertive to achieve your dreams, focus on financial independence but look after your own health & family.

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Womanhood is often challenging, but don’t lose your sense of humour … like the next woman on our special on Women’s Day. Here’s Dr. Aditi Sapre, a statistician from Pennsylvania, USA, who speaks to Parinita on what it means to her to be a woman.

Dr_Aditi_Sapre


Q: What are the top 3 ways in which you would like to be defined?

Aditi:  As a decent human being, as a productive member of society/community and as a nurturer of relationships (mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend)

Q: Do you think it is possible for a woman to be both modern and traditional?

Aditi: I am not sure I believe in or really understand these labels. That being said …I consider myself a modern woman… one whose thoughts, beliefs, experiences are a reflection and product of her time. However I have also been deeply influenced by women along the way (mother, grandmothers, aunts, teachers) who were progressive, strong role models and who passed on a core “traditional” value system.

Q: One incident/instance where you felt proud to be a woman.

Aditi: This was a tough question to answer. My major personal achievements/triumphs had very little to do with gender. However, clichéd as it may sound, becoming a mother was the singular watershed moment of my life.  It changed me forever and it had everything to do with being a woman!

Q: How often do you wear a sari? How do you feel when dressed in a sari?

Aditi: To be absolutely honest, I don’t wear a sari as often as I would like. But that is mostly due to my general lack of preparedness. When I do on special occasions …..I feel like a queen!! It is the most egalitarian of all garments. When worn properly, all women look beautiful in a sari!

Q: One piece of advice that you want to give to young women today.

Aditi: If we are talking about educated, urban young women, I am not sure they need my advice. I will however say this "You are now enjoying the semi- equality and independence given to you by the labor and sacrifice of millions of women (and some men) who paved the way. It is time to pay it forward and help other marginalized women in the community who still live lives of fear and desperation".

On a lighter note, enjoy the metabolism you have….it’s all going to end eventually!

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Always wear your womanhood with a smile on your face … like this woman on our special feature for Women’s Day. Dr. Jyoti Rao, a physician & entrepreneur from Bangalore, shares with us her thoughts on being a woman.

Dr_Jyoti_Rao


Q: What are the top 3 ways in which you would like to be defined?

Jyoti:  Independent, Bold, Sensitive

Q: Do you think it is possible for a woman to be both modern and traditional?

Jyoti: Indian women today are known to strike a balance between modern outlook and traditional values. Traditional values do not imply old fashioned, patriarchal and orthodox thinking. Strong traditional values can help women to be confident, assertive and lead the family along with their men.

Q: One incident/instance where you felt proud to be a woman.

Jyoti: Whenever I see any woman achieve something, I feel proud. Women are stronger mentally than men and deal with complicated situations with more ease and dignity.

Q: How often do you wear a sari? How do you feel when dressed in a sari?

Jyoti: I wear saris on special occasions like festivals. Would love to wear them more often. Sari makes me feel elegant, graceful and slimmer.

Q: One piece of advice that you want to give to young women today.

Jyoti: Do not compromise on your happiness all the time.

 

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