My Word Is Law

By Shobha Diwakar

Men, men, men; God created them in his own image I have heard and the tender Eve from his raw bone! only if he had not done so, poor Eve would have suffered less but then stories are stories and mythology mere mythology, either you believe in them or you don’t. Whatever be the truth the fact remains that the so called weaker of the sex, the feminine gender is ruled not by the hand that rocks the cradle, but by the hand of the male or better still shall I say the obstinate mule? Yes, why should I not call him… this aggressive specimen, a mule?

 In India, there was a so called he-man, Manu. the most aggressive of the male species who denounced women: although he did perhaps have some soft corners too. His laws if anyone read them now would be bewildered, but why blame the poor man after centuries. The time then was primitive and thinking restricted to the four walls and four corners of the society, but now, the male has grown stronger and more authoritarian than ever before, and we call ourselves educated, refined, techno savvy, broadminded and talk of equality. Is there any such idea prevalent in our modern society?

 Man by nature is a violent species. We do accept the truth about the lion being the king of the forest because he is terribly muscular and ferocious yet, can anyone deny the fact that these very typical lions reside even in our own homes? Yes indeed, they do and sometimes this tame animal called the male viciously commands the house, his wife and his children as custodians on whom he can lash out, growl and burr like the lion in the forest and all the little animals scamper away at the highest speed to save their skin. The broad shouldered he-man of the forest lies low to catch his prey.

 Man, as you read the papers and hear the news, cannot resist throwing his weight around anywhere and everywhere. The easiest prey resides just an arm away from him … his wife whom he targets for no rhyme or reason. It is believed that education broadens a man’s outlook and refines his manners but I am afraid this is not so. The grinding a man gets in the environment lays the foundation ‘rock’ of his behavior and the basics about social conduct he learns at home, defines his character. It is a sorry, mingled state of affairs that though the psychologists assert heredity over environment the naked truth is that environment engulfs the man’s very being though heredity is no less responsible… more so for his manly genes.

 Inherited and acquired qualities are poles apart. I remember a neighbor who adopted a village girl because her father served them. Surprisingly, the girl was so quick to learn that in less than a fortnight she had learnt table manners, talk in good simple English, dress up smartly and talk with confidence to strangers with her hands clutched firmly behind her back, which convinced me that environment had more influence on a person’s mental frame than heredity. As a child, she soon came to understand the fact that she was a privileged child and she had the opportunity to uplift herself. I was exasperated to learn that she refused to walk to her nearby school; she demanded to be driven in a jeep. Definitely, her sharpened intelligence had an edge over her.

 Well, I seem to have strayed away from ‘my word is law’… you see lions and tigers, panthers and leopards are good for the jungle because they fit in that environment where they can crawl, prowl, scowl and drawl and of course GROWL… Nonetheless, if a man constantly does that within the four walls of his so called sacred home, what happens then? Well then, the home becomes a house and all members, residents of a hotel, where you see nothing but blinds, curtains, doors and walls everywhere. All succumbed to caterers and caretakers

 It seems for some men time and tide has not changed anything. The more you lend them your arm to recline the more they gobble you up. I wonder when men will learn to be men and regard the female of the species… his wife as a friend and not a housemaid/cleaner. When a girl gets married, she adores looking after her husband, his family and later on her children. Yet, as time moves on the gaps begin to show because the man demands not only too much attention but also thrusts all his personal responsibilities on the poor over burdened wife. The Indian husband for that matter is a mastermind in this respect for as Gratiano said in The Merchant of Venice, “When I ope(n) my mouth let no man speak”

 … I am A Man, I have the power to twist you round my little finger, I am HE, I command you to follow MY Orders and Me! My Word Is Law… speak or oppose and thou shall be punished. I am the Lord of all I survey. I am the graver of the sex. I am Lord Shiva Incarnate. If I open my third eye, there shall be chaos…

 So much for the male of the species, the timid Eve no longer timid is now ready to pounce like a cat. Right and might are now bosom friends. Yes, this is the 21st century.

About the Author: Dr. Shobha Diwakar lives in Jabalpur, India and retired as the head of English department at C.P. Mahila Mahavidhyalaya, Jabalpur. She has published many research papers, stories, poems and essays in national, international and online journals. She contributes regularly to writerslifeline and Indian Periodical. Dr Diwakar  servers on the Advisory Board of and editorial board of CLRI (contemporary literary journal India) for poetry and short story section.


  1. A very well written article showing clearly what most of the men in reality are. I hope they read this article and improve their thinking and learn to give space to females who do more than their share especially if she is a working woman. Education has failed in bringing about a change in this particular field. I’m sure even if men read this article they will just screw up their nose and say,’We are doing so much for them, we work from morning to evening yet this is what they feel about us.’ Yes, you do but a woman is on duty 24/7×365 whereas you get holidays while she doesn’t and worst is when you are at home you relax while she is made to dance around on her toes by you yet you consider yourself to be tired, that’s absolutely weird!

  2. Sudha Dixit Thanks a lot Rose

    Dr. shobha I liked your article much more than your poems. I very much relate to your views.good job.

    Sudha Dixit

  3. Great job on this one.

  4. thank you very much poonam, sudhaji and MA Rossi for your appreciation and my views
    we do live in a world of so called equality, which is restricted to paper and does not cross its boundary
    I do hope in times to come this gap in genders will truly and sincerely be demolished, and women be given and awarded their due.
    better late than never