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“NATIONAL GENDER”

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English Poetry

I have been pondering since childhood,

As long as my personhood could !

How, why and whence onward,

India was named in effeminate card ?

Though our land sustained slavery,

Our people always maintained bravery !

India pronouned by ‘She’ or ‘Her’,

Anglice, everyone happens to refer !

I, rather, feel always offended, 

Everybody, every book litterally depended,

None came forward to get it amended,

What I felt and always intended !

I can’t see India called effeminate,

This being merely a lingual etiquette !

Hence, I beseech intelligentsia,

To enlighten upon this deep mania !

                       ******

A.K. Goswami,

31-05-2009.

10 Comments

  1. ULHAS says:

    Yes, a good one………….

    Stars = 4

  2. ashwini kumar goswami says:

    This poem comes of my personal apprehension that when a nation is
    represented or refered to in different names like ‘ARYAVART’, ‘BHARAT’,
    ‘HINDUSTAN’, ‘INDIA’ &C., it seems to me that the nation doesn’t hold firm
    its absolute entity and integrity with the outcome such as to hamper its
    progress and prosperity as methinks. And hence, this interrogative poem ?!
    A.K. Goswami. PS: PROPER NOUNS OUGHT NOT TO BE GIVEN ALTERNATE AND
    TRANSLATED NAMES !

  3. Vishvnand says:

    Yes, a very meaningful poem and a point to ponder.
    We call our country our “motherland”, Bharatmata, our salutation is Vandemataram, Bharatmata ki Jai. This reflects a particular intensity & kind of profound love a child feels for mother. Internalizing this feeling becomes our attitude towards our country as also toward other countries and their nationals, which is more holistic..
    I understand that in some countries the nation is referred to as “Fatherland”, and their attitude accordingly is different.
    It can be debatable whether we should consider & address our country as”Motherland” or “Fatherland” in the situations existing today.

    • ashwini kumar goswami says:

      @Vishvnand, Hi! Vishvnand JI, I really feel
      a genius observer is again here. I further feel stolen in toto, as quite same is hidden my motto. I wanted the same logic to add but just to curtail space ahead. Bharatmata is of course feminine, but ‘Bharat’ name is yet masculine.
      That’s why I withdrew that logic !

      • Vishvnand says:

        ashwini kumar goswami,
        Imbibing the thought that our country is our motherland, the response if of profound love for our country as mother, need to protect it at all cost, be proud of it as also to free it from all ills.

        When we call our country “fatherland”, the prime thought is of ownership of it and our rights. Aggression lurks in the mind, the desire to expand it and make it bigger, acquire more territory and rule over others.

        In history, it is India, probably alone, which has not attacked any nation to expand its territory, rule over others, forcefully convert and spread religion, but all efforts all along have been to protect our country, to free it from foreign domination, have peace within along with affluence of knowledge, wisdom and right kind of riches.

        These are my thoughts in the matter.

      • braj says:

        @ashwini kumar goswami,
        how can u call urself masculine
        when your parts are named feminine
        you have body not bada
        u wear chadh not chaddha
        u have leg, back, and khopadi
        u shoud have lega backa and khopda
        for u like only masculine
        and lookdown upon what is feminne
        u write poem not poema
        u write in angreji not in angreja
        before writing see the meaning of effeminate
        from ur perspective please dont rate
        such rimers i hate
        they know nothing but bate
        they come out with their polluted mind
        and kill others time with poems of this kind
        to become a good aprentice of muse
        read for sure Vertika’s views
        please be content and not furious
        to read ur senseful poems am curious

  4. ashwini kumar goswami says:

    Revered Vishvnand Ji, May I reiterate my point of view by clarifying that the
    title of your good poem “Meraa Bhaarat Mahaan” ipso facto ratifies that
    “BHAARAT” is masculine, or otherwise the title would be “Meri Bhaarat Mahaan” ! Similarly, we would speak “Mera India” and not “Meri India” !
    So also, we have to utter “Mera Bhaarat” instead of “Meri Bhaarat”. Further
    more, “Bhaaratmaata” being a compound of “Bhaarat” & “Maata”, which
    denotes “Bhaarat Ki Maata” and not only “Bhaarat” ! My poem en effect
    intended to emphasize that a Nation must be adamant to upkeep only one
    name and not at all be liberal to be called by whatever name on exotic and
    haphazard choices ex adverso ! Proper nouns need not be given any
    alternate and translated names like India vice ‘Bhaarat’ ? “Bhaarat” must be
    called “Bhaarat” only, invariably and ubiquitously ! a.k. goswami.
    PS: Notwithstanding all aforesaid, I may also point out that confusive terms, at least, at the top levels of the country/Governance, e.g. The President of India being named as “RASHTRAPATI” also need to be reviewed, the correct meaning being”Rashtradhyaksh” so as to preclude against the confusion when the chair is occupied by a female, in which case grammar doesn’t allow the word either of “Rashtrapati” and “Rashtrapatni” (Correct word should be “Rashtradhyakshaa”) ?
    Excuse me, Sir!
    Besides, the word “Rashtrapati” also may mean that our “Rashtra” is “patni” ? a.k. goswami.

    • Vishvnand says:

      Ashwini kumar goswami ji,
      What you say & are pointing out is quite right in some way.
      However, what I wanted to bring to notice was, ” Sau me se nabbe beiimaan, Meraa Bharat Mahan” I would not have dared write, if it was ” Meri Bharatmata mahan.” I do hope you get the subtle point.
      Regarding the other of your observations, we can see, ours is a democracy, where Vande Mataram” is objected to and “Jana Gana Mana”, a song composed by Rabindranath Tagore for welcoming The King George V as “Bharat Bhagya Vidhata” is accepted and formalized as our national Anthem, what can one expect in such matters of concern as pointed out by you.
      However, the solace is that we as individuals are free to consider our country as our motherland, or fatherland or both, depending upon what is our feeling at the time and address our country accordingly performing our duties in its honor also accordingly…
      I hope this would close the argument or apprehensions if any, for the time being…Regards

  5. ashwini kumar goswami says:

    Genders are applied to persons, places and things in accordance with the
    names by which they are known and called. Anything/anyone is ofcourse
    masculine if the name is masculine, irrespective of whether his/its parts of body are feminine. The gist of the poem apparently seems to have been
    misapprehended/misunderstood for which I can’t help. The more the men,
    the more the minds. Sorry I am if one couldn’t sense, find ! As regards meaning of ‘effeminate’
    it stands quite befitting with the gist of poem, which ultimately reflects my urge that “BHARAT”,
    being a proper noun, ought to be called “BHARAT” invariably here and everywhere, even in the books and maps etc.
    a.k. goswami.

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