Ask Amma

And yes, we persisted!

In Field Notes on 15 June 2017 at 11:14 am

Chetana Amma’s latest despatch!

Source: And yes, we persisted!

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Conversations Born from Stories

In Books on 2 June 2017 at 1:56 pm

You, Me, and a Story
Suresh Ediga
46 pages

The wheels on the bus go round and round!  goes a popular children’s ditty.  But what if the wheels stop turning?  What if people stop breathing?  Such are the questions that Suresh Ediga explored with his children when talking with them about such issues as the disaster in Bhopal, in which a pesticide factory exploded, leaking tons of toxic fumes, killing thousands instantly and poisoning the ground and water for decades.  This makes the first story in his collection, You, Me & a Story.  

The family that reads together! From left, Sireesha, Suresh, Surina, Suhash each holding a copy of You, Me & a Story.

For pocket, planet and a happy period: Nirmala talks about the menstrual cup

In Field Notes on 5 April 2017 at 10:41 am

One form of untouchability that we must work to eradicate is menstrual untouchability.  Unique to women, this oppression is based on the idea that a woman’s body is defective and dirty, and can pollute people and spaces if not kept in check.  A recent incident in a school in Uttar Pradesh highlights the need to fight the notion that menstruation is a cause for shame or punishment.  The principal of Kasturba Gandhi Residential School in Digri village made 70 girls strip and be searched for menstrual blood.  Following complaints by students and parents, the principal was fired.  Parents and teachers of  girls should help them to manage periods comfortably and to value the vitality in their bodies, including their menstrual blood, which makes it possible for a woman to nourish new life.

It is good that the community in Muzzafarnagar took decisive action against this outrage; yet menstrual untouchability persists in stark and subtle ways, not only in far flung villages but also among the urban educated.   In the march to consign menstrual taboo to the dustbin of history, one important step is to make periods more comfortable.

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