Discrimination against Women in Pakistani Society
Aga Khan University School Of Nursing and Midwifery
EN 412 Professional Writing II
Faculty: Mr. Michael Menezes
April 1, 2014
International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on eight March every year. The primary purpose of its observance is to honor women’s rights worldwide. This year, I got a chance to witness one of the celebrations organized by The Aga Khan University Working Group for Women (WGW) to celebrate IWD. On the one hand, seeing the contributions of women to our society, I felt privileged to be a woman. On the other hand, I was distressed thinking of the discrimination faced by women in their daily lives. Discrimination against women is one of the types of gender discrimination. Gender discrimination means judging someone primarily on the basis of his or her sex. According to Khan (2012),
Discrimination against women means any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of impairing of nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women, irrespective of their marital status on a basis of equality of men and women of human rights and fundamental freedom in the economic, social, cultural, civil, political or any other field.
In this paper, I will throw light on the socio-economic as well as cultural significance of gender discrimination in general, and discrimination against women, in particular. Along with that, prevalence, causes, impacts on the society, and strategies to overcome discrimination against women will be discussed.
To start with, discrimination against women occurs globally, its roots are entrenched in the Asian world particularly. Pakistan is not lagging behind in this regard. Women face discrimination in Pakistan at various levels, such as, at domestic level, at educational level, on political platforms, and at workplace. Firstly, women are being discriminated at domestic level. The very first time girls face discrimination is the time when they are not even being brought to this world, i.e., during the determination of the baby’s sex. This occurs either before conception or while the baby is in his mother’s womb. Over here, son preference acts as a lead to gender discrimination. If a lady is pregnant, a hope to give birth to a baby boy develops. Ali, Krantz, Gul, Asad,Johansson, and Mogren (2011) found in their study that if the mother gives birth to a baby boy, she gets extra care. However, if a baby girl is born, the mother is being ignored. In addition, girls have differential access to food. This means while providing food to children, parents prefer boys over girls to get quality food. Discrimination at domestic level does not end here. In Pakistan, every other day a woman becomes a victim of domestic violence which remains underreported. Secondly, women are being discriminated at educational level. There is a huge gender gap in educational system. If we have a look at the...