Proceedings of The 4th Global Conference on Women’s Studies
Influence of Patriarchy among the Syrian Christian women of Kerala from 1947-2000
Salome Grace Thomas
Patriarchy is a prime obstacle to women’s advancement and development. Women have been given a secondary and inferior position in society. She is a victim of injustice, suppression, oppression, subjugation and exploitation in a male-dominant Indian society. Women occupy an important position as a wife, mother, daughter and sister and most importantly as a human being. However, a man-women relationship is defined by male-ego, male- domination and gender discrimination which seeks to marginalize the role of women in society. Syrian Christians are a community in Kerala, India who trace their origins to the evangelistic activity of Saint Thomas in the 1st century. They practice strict endogamy, which is central to preserving hereditary socio-economic capital. My paper attempts to understand male dominance and how it affects women’s position and status among the Syrian Christian community. The research method is quantitative in nature and will comprise of interviews and mailed questionnaires with a focus group of Syrian-Christian women. The area of my research study will be conducted on Syrian-Christian women residing in the state of Kerala and outside. The outcome of my paper attempts to show that patriarchy is still present even today and though the women do have control over male dominance they still cannot fully voice their rights and opinion as freely as they would like to.
keywords: agency, Kerala, male dominance, Syrian-Christian, women