Sunday, April 25

South African Men Suck

Due to all the nuptials this weekend I had the opportunity to sit in three marriage orientated lectures, one each before the Nikkah, reception and Valima. Although they were all quite different they all shared a common fundamental point: that South African Asian Muslim men needed to step up a bit.

You know, about how there is a huge pool (ie oversupply) of awesome single women just waiting to be good wives for any guy lucky enough to realise it, and that men needed to stop looking at beauty and youth when considering a woman for marriage and begin appreciating all those law and medical degrees their counterparts went out of their way to get instead. They needed to begin to accept that women had a voice, and support their struggle for an equal standing; that female independence is something to be sought after and celebrated and not shied away from.

Judging by the nodding of heads on the men's side (and the alleged swooning on the girls') this all seemed to be pretty well received by the audience at hand. So yes, perhaps South African Men really do suck?

It's funny though. There are times when I stare at wonder at how advanced Muslim society is here in South Africa (especially when it comes to more traditional practise like prayer and halal food) but then there are times like this when I'm reminded of our own development and journey back in the UK. This is all pretty much much the same kinda thing we used to hear back in London five years or so ago, a lot of it which has already been challenged by men and women alike since then - I won't go into the details since they're a bit boring. However I will say that the overall effect there was to have people marry a bit later in life at an age none really expected; it'd be interesting to see how it pans out in these parts.

As an aside from what I can tell of the girls I spoke too although many of them are all mild feminists (quite depressingly I don't think I met any who had or were willing to change their names after marriage) they all seemed well rooted in tradition. I'm still trying to get my head around this. Either some are in a huge denial about what they believe to be their role in society or they've exclusively managed to follow a narrow path which has eluded other women all over the world.

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