тел.: +380686847461

Mridula Ghosh: “Dad warned me:” You need to work 10 times better than your male counterparts then will be an unquestioning acceptance. The world is very unfair to women»

NGO “Ukrainian Women’s Guard” launches a series of dating with women who are changing the world. Introducing the first of our heroes cycle dating – Mridula Ghosh. Human rights activist, political scientist, historian – international affairs with a scientific degree of candidate of sciences, journalist, Head of the East European Development Institute. Mridula perfectly knows Ukrainian, Russian, English and French languages. Citizen of India. She lives in Kiev.


Biography: Born in Calcutta. Her mother – a lawyer, her father – a famous doctor and social activist Ranjan Ghosh ChyttZa. The first higher education Mridula received in Presidency –  College at Calcutta University, the oldest higher education in the country, which have been brought up many leaders of Indian liberation movement (in a reputable institution educated the first President of independent India Rajendra Prasad and first president of Bangladesh, a famous film director Satyajit Ray ). After graduating, Mridula Ghosh came to Ukraine in 1984 and became a student of the faculty of international relations and international law, Shevchenko Kiev State University.


She worked at the UN Office in Ukraine, was the chief editor of Eastern Economist, a member of “Renaissance”. The head of East European Development Institute.

The author of three books. Translated poetry on the Bengali language of 45 Ukrainian authors – “Anthology Ukrainian poetry” published in India. Opened in Ukraine the Center Rabindranath Tagore.


UWG Had you ever an experience of discrimination based on sex. How exactly was it pronounced?


There were many cases of discrimination. However, I felt it more acutely in adult life, as a child, through affiliation with enough highly intelligent and progressive family, I knew no discrimination, although born and raised in a society where there is strong tradition. On the contrary … I have no relatives sisters. Unlike my two younger brothers, I had a number of privileges. As a teenager, I could walk for a long time and come home late, I did not have to report on what I spent my pocket money. The brothers had to be home in time and to report for every penny. However, I was taught discipline and responsibility. Parents told that they allow me more because I have freedom, but I have to learn how to use from my childhood. Other girls have no such freedom as you. Review it! Even remember on all my life dad’s warning, “We are at home so freely. But life is another. You must be 10 times better work than your male counterparts then will be unquestioning acceptance. The world is very unfair to women. “I am proud that I had such parents.


I am sure, in our days, it is hard to discriminate someone directly but you can show patronage or “patronage” that would lead to unequal treatment. In the student and professional life, I have seen a patronage relationship. In a world of many men who thus “protect” the weaker sex, but do not believe that we can be equal. Not providing equal opportunities. It is sad to say that these were among the men and women who also accepted these rules and were instruments of this inequality. As for me, I felt it,  I am also a foreigner, from  the “East” country, where waiting for just obedient submissive female dolls. Nevertheless, thank God, a very small number of cases and individuals have a neatly hide arrogant attitude.


UWG What would you recommend a woman who fights for equality in their everyday lives?


Be yourself, know your rights and responsibilities, and politely ignore all attempts to “drive it into a corner” by others. Moreover, do not lose balance and flexibility (which is terribly lacking men).


UWG If a society has strong patriarchal traditions – as they can fight to avoid damage to the cultural nation as a whole.


Are there strong patriarchal traditions that oppress women can be considered as part of the culture of the people? Just kidding. Seriously, I have not always identified the patriarchal tradition of discrimination against women. Some traditions are kept because they are ancient – such as imitation dads name or surname you, though some women may give birth and raise children. We in India, for example, only sons could be heirs and perform the last rites when parting with their parents after their death. If, however, kept this tradition in religious ceremonies, then by the laws sons and daughters have the same rights to inheritance. Therefore, legally enforceable right to have an advantage over traditional rules. Thus, the development of civilization is different, however, the overall culture will not suffer.

Also, I noticed where the external attributes of a patriarchal system are seen very good, there are a strong matriarchal unrealized undetected or current values. I am sure in this. After all, to have – is the beginning of life. Therefore, it seems better to reveal and enhance matriarchal tradition than say about overcoming the strong patriarchal. Perhaps then, there will talk about the culture of harm, and its enrichment. If there is a domination of one culture through coercion, there is a counter-culture. Have you noticed, the unisex clothing is popular nowadays? We are still in the future we can talk about post-gender studies. In the perception of the world are such common things that can not be “genderazation.”


UWG Do you consider yourself as an example of realized woman?


No. However, I did some things in life, but could a hundred times more.


UWG Had you someone who inspired you?


I have no idols. Or I have … and a lot of them. As in Hinduism – 33 million gods and goddesses! Each person who crossed my life, I received something of value, something studied, something inspired. That anyone, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, profession, or social status. As a journalist, you probably know how much makes contact with ordinary people. In addition to family and parents who are dear to me. For me, knowledge from large legacy wise figures is also very significant – Tagore, Shakespeare, Einstein, Shevchenko, Lesia Ukrainian. I like poets and writers – a Ukrainian Lesya addition to the memories even Anne Frank, poetry Wislawa Szymborska, Elizabeth Crimson, Marina Tsvetaeva, Svetlana Aleksiyevych work and many others. Getting force only read them when I work hard. Among those whom I was lucky enough to see and communicate in life (at least a couple of times), it is Mother Teresa, the standard of sacrifice and kindness. I also in a childhood I studied the art of dance with elder brother Ravi Shankar, Uday Shankar, who first popularized Indian classical dance art abroad. He danced with Anna Pavlova. He showed us how to work to improve every movement … and when I saw Maya Plisetskaya speech and then read her autobiography, it also gave great inspiration.


UWG What qualities and skills women need to acquire for its implementation as a person, in addition to professional skills?


Women probably have to be creative and to very educated, I mean a general understanding of the world and others. Right, literature, history, and art. Each woman is an  artist … and a woman should create … in the kitchen, and needlework, and economy. Where there are no standard solutions, women will find out …


UWG In Ukraine there are some cases of discrimination against women in the professional realization in certain sectors such as the defense of the country – can the international support of women help solve this problem?


In Sanskrit it is said: “Mother and homeland are more important than paradise.” So give yourselves to protect the homeland should all, and man and woman. Many defense forces of various countries, Israel, the USA, India, China, and NATO, have the practice of attracting women. I see no problem here. Now eight of NATO defense ministers are women. In 2005, when the President of India visited Ukraine, his security was several laps. In this part were women and men. I am certainly not suggesting to you to do the same. It is up to you. I think all Ukrainian women .. they are very strong historically proved for centuries. Therefore, international support is very necessary. Perhaps it is necessary to unite efforts of Baltics countries, Georgia, and Eastern Europe to raise these issues at the international level, even at the level of NGOs and horizontal initiatives.


More probably in the middle of the country, when in Parliament will be more women than they can make certain laws to address these issues. Alternatively, we can dream that one day a woman will become a Minister of Defense in your country.


UWG Your forecast for Ukraine in terms of the struggle it of its independence.


Ukraine for 25 years is independent. However, the struggle for the complete and true independence continues. It is a long and difficult path of war at the borders, the return of the Crimea solution to minimize page totalitarianism and Russian imperial rule. And not only. This internal struggle with the enemy, corruption, unfair distribution of resources, oligarchic economy, unequal opportunities, inequality, discrimination of various kinds and so on. It is a very serious signal for Ukraine to global democracy, for further understanding of many values. The territorial dismantling of Soviet totalitarianism is not completed. Reconstruction of the entire post-Soviet space will depend on the success of Ukraine.

Hunger and fear – two worst enemies of freedom. Famine could not destroy You. And recent events have shown that the Ukrainian people have no fear. Now on the way of the building there are some “demons” external and internal strife, discord, hindering build a life without hunger and fear forever. The true victory of Maidan ahead.

UWG press, Radmila Korzh

Photo Mridula Ghosh