In the modern world, girls are winning at everything. They’re excelling at sports and competing at major international tournaments. They’re helming films to empower women that are being showered with critical praise. They’re spearheading multi-national companies and taking them to new heights. And they’re voicing their educated opinions on every platform that’s available in front of us. However, if your child is reading the essay on modern girls from ‘Current School Essays and Letters’, they’ll definitely know none of that.
Recently, Facebook user Abhik Hazra made a startling revelation about a book that had a compilation of essays. One of them was on modern girls and what defines them.
“The girl in the modern age is generally very smart, intelligent, conscious and fashionable. She is always imitating the male in fashion, ambition and professional endeavours.”
These are the first few lines of the essay named ‘The Modern Girl’ and you can already see the prejudice in it. The essay aims at being modern and yet keeps reiterating how girls aren’t following “traditional” values. And although it seems to be highlighting that change, the passive aggressive tone says otherwise.
While the first page of the essay keeps repeating how girls keep copying boys to seem modern, the latter half is no different. It keeps hammering the notion that modern girls are indifferent and only care about how they look.
As you can see, there’s no attempt to delve into facts and figures about what career choices girls are preferring. Or how they’re attempting to have a presence in the modern society. Instead the writer uses an empty rhetoric to bolster the idea that modern girls only care about fashion and talking to men and have complete lack of empathy for anything else.
This regressive essay caught the eye of many netizens and they aptly slammed it for poisoning the minds of young students.
1. If unlearning is an option, this is the time to use it.
What a disgusting definition of modern girl! Students should unlearn this if already they have learned from the book. pic.twitter.com/MONJdSFbkh
— taslima nasreen (@taslimanasreen) August 21, 2018
2. It is certainly appalling.
(Sent by a batchmate) pic.twitter.com/qvywsfXvR7
— Rema Rajeshwari IPS (@rama_rajeswari) August 21, 2018
3. Immediate action should be taken.
Current School Essays and Letters by Purabi Chakraborty has misleading, damaging content on the essay "The Modern Girl". Can we together stop for misguiding young minds 🙏#misleadingcontent @narendramodi @SushmaSwaraj @Manekagandhibjp pic.twitter.com/YoCS5qiwhY
— MBordoloi (@Priyaz27) August 21, 2018
4. How did this even get approved by the school boards?
"A modern girl is too selfish to think about others. Only latest fashion and cosmetics are dear to her". A textbook intended for ICSE & CBSE board by a nanny called Purani Chakraborty. #Shameless #trash @derekobrienmp @HRDMinistry #cisce #CBSE @TheOpIndian @Manekagandhibjp pic.twitter.com/8BsAM5haYS
— Soma Basu (@sbasu_in) August 20, 2018
5. What was the writer thinking?
Wow this is not parody. The definition of a "modern girl" in a school essay book, via @mtanmay from the wall of Abhik Hazra. Modern girls are apparently "self-centred creatures". https://t.co/6cNunsA4ME pic.twitter.com/HMnX4QTlrx
— Rituparna Chatterjee (@MasalaBai) August 20, 2018
Essay writing in school is a way to express one’s philosophies and not just a way to learn how to write proper English. It often becomes the starting point for a potential storyteller, scriptwriter or any profession in the creative field. And after reading ‘The Modern Girl’, if kids start emulating its ideologies, then it’ll be very harmful for them in the long run. So, even if the damage is already done, the exam boards should look into this matter, recall these copies and hold the writer accountable for such a regressive essay.