Elder women are the most prone to destitution, and the government is partly to blame for the abetment of elder abuse, says Bihar Mahila Samakhya State Project Officer Keerti. “The way the government has a focus on adolescent girls, and young mothers, why doesn’t the government have a programme for elderly women on the same lines? The government only seems interested in women when they are in the reproductive stage, and after that they are abandoned.”
The Women’s Studies Department of Patna University can play a pivotal role in studying the condition of elderly women and come out with a comprehensive report that will pave the way for government response or a policy level intervention, she said.
As a matter of fact, not many know that Patna University offers a Master of Arts degree in Women’s Studies, under the Department of History. A two year course with four semesters, open to men and women who have obtained a bachelor’s degree in any stream. A one year post graduate diploma course is women’s studies is also on offer.
Dr Sharad Kumari pointed out the value of the Women’s studies course, both as a means of empowering women and sensitizing men towards burning gender issues, and as an essential qualification for pursuing a career in the national and international social work sector as well as higher education.
“The government should get their officers to take up a short course in Women’s Studies. We could do special courses for different administrative groups suited to their needs”, says Dr Padmalata Thakur, the course coordinator at Patna University.
Women’s studies is useful for those in service as well. But more importantly, it has the potential to change patriarchal mind sets.
Do you want to join a PG Diploma/ Masters in Women’s Studies? Contact the History Department of Patna University at Darbhanga House. Admissions are on. Contact Dr Padamlata Thakur on 9334961738 or the office at 7677009616