Proceedings of The The 3rd International Academic Conference on Humanities and Social Sciences
Fossilization of Gender Identities in the Hindu Social Structure: A Study through the Marriage Hymns of Atharva-Veda
Ancient Hindu cult adhered to Vedas for the moral and social code of conduct. The tenets of Vedas were treated as sublime, hence were unquestionable. The roots of code of conduct cemented in Vedic India gradually metamorphosed into unequal power distribution in Hindu society. It led to the evolution of sexual identities, along with the customs and practices which emanated gender inequality in ancient India. Established social diktats and process of social conditioning nurtured gender roles. The paper attempts to examine the marriage hymns of Atharva-Veda which delineate roles and responsibilities of men and women in the institution of marriage. The analysis is focused on filtered marriage hymns which discuss the concept of Streedhan, prove the existence of patrilocal and patrilineal society, and advocates motherhood. The objective of the paper is to foresee the impact of the Hindu jurisprudence on its women.
Keywords: Female foeticide; male progeny; motherhood; patrilocal; Streedhan.