Microwave Madam explores the impact of patriarchy on her life and on society. And looks for solutions.
- Beacons of Light | A Tale of Two FamiliesExploring Patriarchy Chapter 1 – Amid all those women who were digging their own ditches, she now saw the beacons of light. Family, friends and neighbours who had found small ways to happiness and made space for themselves in a comfortable manner, within the boundaries of the society they lived in. And they became her role models.
- The Knight | Change the Woman to Change the ManExploring Patriarchy Chapter 2 – Microwave Madam, an avid reader of old romance novels, had found her knight. A knight-in-shining-armor who had never really had any practise because he’d been rescued all his life.
- Equality at Home | A Wonderful WomanExploring Patriarchy Chapter 3 – Gender equality within the larger family was another story. There differences with food and a hierarchy that decided who got offered the best. She was last on the list – a woman in a family where men ranked first, as well as a woman new to the family.
- Meet Microwave Madam’s Husband | The KeeperExploring Patriarchy Chapter 4 – MM’s husband was a forward thinking man who lacked the skills needed to make his ideas on equality a daily reality. Two things in particular that made housework and endless task for MM with no weekly off – food habits and disorganization.
- The Mother Wound | This GiftExploring Patriarchy Chapter 5 – And because of the glorification of the mother that was so much a part of her family culture, she would feel deep guilt and self-recrimination. She would forget that being a mother doesn’t raise one to God-like perfection and take away one’s humanity – one’s fallibility.
- The New Woman | Paint the Town REDExploring Patriarchy Chapter 6 – There were some digs and criticism that hurt. She learned it was okay to be childless as long as you were deeply unhappy about it. To accept what the God’s gave you and change your dreams accordingly, and be grateful and not ask for more? That, wasn’t acceptable she realized. One had to have children, or be miserable that one didn’t have children. There was no other acceptable option to some.
- These Rules | Don’tExploring Patriarchy Chapter 7 – They tied MM down though she didn’t even realize it. All these rules about what women should wear – what ‘look’ their appearance should portray. Where they could go when they went out, and what time they should be back home.
What happens when the busy is more than families can handle? Do they see that it’s a problem and realize they need to do something about it? Or do they accept it and wait till it reaches breaking point?
Here’s the story of the busy of Microwave Madam. A busy that combined with rigid gender roles and took away ease in daily living. See how her struggles made her look for solutions.
- When Chores Take Over | She’s got OCDFire Fighting Mode Chapter 1 – She’s got OCD – it keeps her safe, the world will end if the tendli is cut round, not straight.
- Gender Roles | The Bottom of the BarrelFire Fighting Mode Chapter 2 – She’s like the bottom of the pot where the spoon scrapes when there’s not enough inside to put on our plates. Like the bottom of the barrel that bears the pressure when it’s filled to the brim. With no ease or leisure.
- Reaching For Help | Five Years a VictimFire Fighting Mode Chapter 3 – The sins of the mother come down to her son, but how long should we blame her for what he’s become? One year of marriage – a journey together, a year during which we learn more about each other.
- Ownership | The Sins of Their Father’s MotherFire Fighting Mode Chapter 4 – Do women deserve a weekly off or do they need to pay for the sins of their husbands mother on that seventh day? The mother who never got any rest and thought that it was right to be an obedient daughter-in-law and a quiet unopinionated wife.
- Hope | Not WonderwomanFire Fighting Mode Chapter 5 – Microwave Madam was at a turning point now. Where one hits rock bottom and discovers there’s only one way to go. And that’s upward.
Becoming Microwave Madam
Meet Microwave Madam and understand why she gave up her career and opted for work-from-home with low pay.
- Conditioning and WaysBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 1 – She didn’t realize she’d been conditioned to think a certain way. That he too, like her, had been conditioned by social and cultural expectations, as one often just looks at them as the norm.
- Microwave MadamBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 2 – You might need to remember India at the time home appliances entered the market, to understand Microwave Madam. The resistance to new which also encompasses the attitude to the new woman in a housing societies, but does not extend to her husband.
- Gender Roles and MarriageBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 3 – Marriage for many starts with the premise that the income of the husband is permanent and therefore more important, and that of the wife an option and not a real need. That’s the way she thought, and the way he did too. It’s the way it was for their parents, and a system familiar and therefore easy to adopt.
- The MaidBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 4 – The maid was a solution that started another problem – She goes on leave for just 15 days from the 15th of Feb till the 15th of May.
- Juggling RolesBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 5 – It would take her years to learn to be efficient at cooking, cleaning and organization, because doing this meant discarding old ideas and traditions. Fixations on they way things had to be done that come down from generation to generation in Indian families and are so much a part of customs and traditions that one needs to really be pushed against a wall to question them.
- This BusyBecoming Microwave Madam Chapter 6 – 9 to 5 equals 7, on days that are busy they’re home after eleven. Both of them work and their schedule’s real tight, it’s what they expected but this busy isn’t right.
Hi, I’m Anitaelise. I teach piano lessons and write poetry. I love walking in the sun, listening to music and playing the piano. Happiness is seeing my students in piano class. Writing in my diary. Being out in the sun. Planting in my little compost pots. And looking up recipes that I’m never going to cook. Minimalism and and organization have relaxed my housekeeping and brought much joy to daily living.
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