Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) in association with its Department of Political Science, Centre for Health and Social Justice (CHSJ) and MenEngaged, Delhi organised the One Billion Rising (OBR) campaign.
The campaign culminated in a programme on "Notes of Harmony – Towards Gender Justice" at M A Ansari Auditorium in the campus on Friday. This is the third consecutive year that the JMI has been associated with the OBR campaign against violence towards women.
Since beginning, the OBR campaign has been using cultural expressions to create a wider platform. The programme started with a debate by college students on "The media is responsible for increase in sexism and violence against women".
Students from the JMI, Lady Sri Ram College for Women, Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar College and Indraprastha College for Women participated in the event. A panel discussion was held on "Portrayal of gender and masculinities in Media".
The speakers were of the view that the media portrays gender roles in stereotyped ways and mass media in general constitute potentially powerful sources of information pertaining to gender appropriateness of a wide variety of practices and behaviors.
They further said that the media is constantly enforcing and re-enforcing stereotypes and creating ideal types of different roles, which viewers often blindly ascribe to. The panel discussion was moderated by Bulbul Dhar James of JMI’s Political Science Department.
Through the panel discussion, the activists and the senior journalists explored the ways in which media operates, affects and influences public behaviour and gender practices. On the occasion Kamla Bhasin, feminist-activist and South-Asia coordinator for OBR campaign released a book ‘Dimensions of Change’, brought out by the CHSJ.The book has articles written by senior journalists Rashme Sehgal, Annu Anand, Annapurna Jha and Anita Katyal.
The articles bring out how complex is the process of gender socialisation and its manifestations. The book also highlights many issues of the gender justice that need to be addressed. The program came to an end with musical performance by renowned sitar maestro Partha Bose’s performance. His performance also highlighted different moods, images and journey of a woman demanding equality and gender justice.