Monday, February 22, 2016

Cultural Pathology in India-5-DOWRY


Apart from the examples mentioned above of people who show odd behaviours and do not fit into any diagnositc category, there are also people in India who fit into psychiatric diagnostic categories but who do not have any label attached to them and who are doing well. These are the Asperger's syndrome people, alcoholics,people with other forms of substance abuse, some people with borderline or mild developmental delay, people with a definite psychiatric diagnosis but who do not ask for asessment and treatment, etc.
 These people live in society and are never brought for treatment...this happens as they not only lack insight but as the people  around them are lacking the guts to suggest they get treatment or report them to the proper authorities.

A few of the several cultural and economic factors causing pathological behaviours in people of India:
Demanding Dowry: Not only do people take dowry, but they pretend they don't;
It is the pretence which is more nauseating than the asking or taking dowry itself.
Bullying of new students by old students
leading to the victims attempting/completing suicide, giving up the educational course and returning home, suffering from depression and anxiety, etc.
Farmers suicides due to a range of interrelated factors
Murders of wives by alcoholic men: These men are so brain damaged by heavy drinking and suffer from alcoholic jealousy and paranoid illnesses. But the newspaper articles reporting of incidents of these men killing their wives never mention the  psychiatric problems such as alcoholic jealousy, paranoia and brain damage  these men suffer from; this gives the impression, to the vast majority of readers that the wives were adulterous. Since I see at least one such death every week in one city's newspapers, you can imagine how many more are happening!
Exposure to Gender and Caste discrimination in India right from childhood, leads women and lower caste people to have a certain unhealthy self-concept and low self-esteem. This pathology of low self-esteem is common in majority of Indian women, low caste people and by many others who are neither low caste or women such as thpose who suffer from handicaps, and those who are different in some visible way;
people in India develop low self-esteem, for various faulty child-rearing patterns, harsh teachers and  stupid value system, period.
The few who do not develop this pathology and have healthy self-esteems are brutally treated by some who cannot tolerate this and verbally or physically assault them until they are cowed down. This is seen more in rural areas than urban and among the  folks who are less evolved. A low caste person demanding his rights is considered to be 'arrogant'; or  a girl who demands equal rights is subjected to such harassment until she backs down and accepts that she was wrong. I can go on and on about several such issues. But I think I have made my point that
 several aspects of Indian culture is pathological;
that many pathologies are acceptable and normal and highly valued in India and
many  normal and decent values are unacceptable to majority of people; that this will continue as long as the people who are right do not fight and resist; that this will continue as long as the oppressors who benefit from this pathology, fight to maintain the current sick culture.

No comments:

sound of crackling ice

My colleague was describing her visit to her dad's cottage last week. It's  the beginning of May and  the lakes of  northern Ontari...