தமிழ்த் தேசியம்

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."

- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Home> Struggle for Tamil Eelam >Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam > Velupillai Pirabaharan > Women's International Day, 1992 > Women & the Struggle for Tamil Eelam

VELUPILLAI PIRABAHARAN

Women's International Day Message
March 8, 1992

"Our women are seeking liberation from the structures of oppression deeply embedded in our society. This oppressive cultural system and practices have emanated from age old ideologies and superstitions. Tamil women are subjected to intolerable suffering as a consequence of male chauvinistic oppression, violence and from the social evils of casteism and dowry."


Today is International Women’s day, a day of awakening, resurgence and political action by women who constitute half the population of the world, a day the marks the revolutionary struggle of women for equal rights and social justice. I am happy to see that this day of women’s resurgence is celebrated all over Tamil Eelam.

The oppression of women is a mode of social injustice which was in practice for millennium, in all countries, in all social formation, in all cultures. This mode of social injustice has not yet been wiped out from the face of the earth.

In the 'developed' world as a consequence of long and protracted struggles, women have been successful in securing many of their political and social rights. They were able to secure substantial rights in the fields of education and employment. yet, women in these countries face enormous problems. The age old problems have re-appeared in new forms.

At a particular phase of history, when capitalist mode of production emerged in the western world, women were subjected in ruthless forms of oppression and exploitation. At that time, it was argued, that the capitalist system was the cause of women’s oppression.

Theories were advanced that women would be liberated only when private property was abolished along with the unequal system of economic production. The full participation of women in the economic production, it was held, would lead to the emancipation of women.

Encouraged by such perception, women who sought liberation mobilized themselves in the revolutionary socialist struggles. With the active participation of women there has been socialist revolutions in certain countries. It is true that conditions of existence of women improved remarkably along with their social status in those countries which opted for socialist transition. yet the modes of oppression of women were not fully transcended. Therefore, in the socialist world too, the ideal of social justice was not fully realized.

Our women are seeking liberation from the structures of oppression deeply embedded in our society. This oppressive cultural system and practices have emanated from age old ideologies and superstitions. Tamil women are subjected to intolerable suffering as a consequence of male chauvinistic oppression, violence and from the social evils of casteism and dowry.

To liberate themselves from these clutches of oppression, it is of utmost importance that women should, first of all understands the nature and structure of the modes of oppression unleased against them. This awakening is crucial for women to rebel and re-orientate their wretched conditions of existence. Women should be awakened from the darkness of an ideological world which makes them believe that their oppressive conditions are the result of their fate, of their actions of former births, of the moral laws enunciated for them, of the cultural configurations that determined their lives. Such as awakening is a necessary condition for their emancipation.

It is only the women with a revolutionary consciousness who could become a revolutionary force. Only such a revolutionary force can destroy the shackles of oppression.

The struggle against male chauvinistic oppression is not a struggle against men. It is an ideological struggle against the ignorance of men. This ideological struggle should aimed at the mental transformation or men, at the distorted perceptions of men about women.

Male - female relationship is the foundation of all human relations. This cannot be reduced to an ordinary social relationship. This relationship is fundamental to human existence and human reproduction. It is the basis of human evolution and development. It is from the contradictions of male- female relationship the manifold problems of women arise.

The problems that emanate from sexual division can be resolved if men and women recognize each other’s liberty, equality and dignity and enter into a cordial relationship based mutual understanding and share the responsibilities of family life and also contribute to the development of society. It is only when the men understand the profound significance and meaning of this love relationship, that male chauvinism and the structures of power and domination arising from it will be resolved.

My greetings to Tamil Eelam Women’s conference which is being held today to mark the International Women’s day.

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