Saturday, September 27, 2008

Pan-IIT's disgraceful 'program for spouses'

Did I want to really say 'disgraceful'? No. I want to amend it, so make it disfuckinggraceful. Just as Ludwig called it 'unfuckingbelievable'.

But a more serious question is this: Why is IIT-M putting up with these morons? As if dissing women in general and IIT alumnae in particular wasn't enough, these guys have put together "a mystic trail" -- right within the IIT-M campus -- that will feature "some of India's most well known practices such as Astrology, Palmistry, Gemology, Nadi and Kili Josiyam..., giving the participants an opportunity to get a first hand experience of some of India's most occult practices and beliefs."

Showcasing occult practices and beliefs? Right within the campus of an IIT? These guys have some gall.

Emma has an awesome post with this conclusion:

What utter nonsense. Why didn't the PanIIT group just point the spouses to this page instead?

Here's Veena's take:

Obviously there is some serious indignation that can be thrown into this but I think Luddo does a nice job of it already and I have nothing to add. Except to say that it doesn't really come as such a big WTF to me because seriously, who expected them to do anything different? [Bold emphasis added by me]

Apurva: "Quite simply, the worst example of patronisation and sexism by members of my alma mater."


  1. Ludwig said...

    Do you think there is a miniscule chance that it's all a gag? To find out if someone is really paying attention to the website? How else to explain it?

    I can't decide whether the sampoorna naari bit is more galling or the Mystic Trail. Keep switching between the do.

    Emma has done a much more analytical job of tearing the thing apart. And Veena's comment is just saddening. What a pass we have come to/have never left...

  2. Unknown said...

    Luddo: Now that you are appropriately saddened, what are you doing about this? I mean I love ranting and all but you seem to be actually concerned. So.

    For instance. Have you rushed off emails to all your fellow alumni and current students? When are you getting people together to spam the Inboxes of these PanIIT morons? Has someone sent an email to our country's foremost feminist and Nobel Laureate (who I believe is attending this) informing him what lies in store for Dr Rothschild?

  3. Alok said...

    Sadly this is all very reflective of general attitudes on the campus. The astrology part however makes me think that it was most probably an isolated bunch of morons.

    People there really do believe that more women aren't there because they don't have brains. In the american universities at least they recognise it as a problem but I don't think IIT does.

  4. Vidya Jayaraman said...

    It is disgraceful to say the least.
    But then I think a large majority of the 'alumni group' might be more interested in the Shilpa shetty session. Innovation? It begins with the JEE exam clearing and then stops right after you get settled into that first job and get comfortably middle aged.

  5. Anonymous said...

    Truly disgusting.

    I was trying to play devil's advocate by trying to modify the text of their web page (in my mind only, of course) to maximize ratio of non-disgusting-ness to the amount of change needed but I failed to obtain any non-trivial solution.

    Also as a matter of principle one should separate the condemnation of blatant show of sexism (spouses = women) from an attempt to define Indian beliefs and practices (astro-moron-logy, palm-moron-istry and such). Sexism doesn't mean being anti-science and vice-versa.

  6. mekie said...

    Looks like they also have an IIT Idol contest!! And does that go on in parallel to the business networking session?

  7. Anonymous said...

    Hey guys and gals,

    Why are you all so surprised? If IIT-ness is majoritarian, upper-casteist, elitist, selfish, ultra-capitalist, why not add sexist to this? Has IIT-ness ever guaranteed any motion towards a balanced, civilized life, or towards a total dog-eat-dogness?

    Anonymous IIT-alumnus

  8. Anonymous said...

    After much hand-wringing by indignant intellectuals, "Anonymous IIT-alumnus" finally gets it. Education to the Indian middle class is largely a job ticket carried in a wallet, or a designer shirt flaunted at a party. Education is acquired and owned, it does not permeate and transform people.

  9. madraskaari said...

    what happend to my comment?


    The most charitable thing to say is it is nice to have options.

  10. Animesh said...

    unfuckingbelievable! Why aren't the guys getting to meet Shilpa Shetty ;) ?


    Seriously, this is amazingly sexist and condescending.

  11. Anonymous said...

    It's sexist and patronising, in an old-fashioned unconscious way, but probably exactly reflects the mind-set of a section of Indians (middle-aged, maybe NRI's who left India in the 70's and 80's?) Regardless, if any IITans think their population's cross-section is different/more progressive than another college's, now or in the past, that's probably just flattering self-delusion. Why should they be different - because they passed the JEE?

  12. Pravesh Biyani said...

    why do all active bloggers like to write posts only criticizing, condemning things around them? Is good blogging all about using WTF and UNFUCKINGBELIEVABLES kind..!! ??

    why do all bloggers think they are the most intelligent that ever existed on earth..?

  13. Anonymous said...

    Just got a reply from one of the organizers. This is what the person had to say
    "This particular track is shaped by 3 women (an alumna and wives of 2 active alumni). I am sure they have quite a few in the spouses subcomittee who intereact and decide . I am not part of the decision making process but aware of what is going on and do not interfere."