05 August, 2021

Uh, Oh, Here She Comes

If a woman commits a crime, it must be her greed and ambition

Illustration by Saahil
Uh, Oh, Here She Comes

Really, would the global banking collapse of the last decade have looked very different if Lehman Brothers had been run by the Lehman Sisters? That was Christine Lagarde, then France’s finance

minister, who made the snap comment when the crisis broke, but frankly, this obsession with genderising the boardroom—women bring caution, prudence and thoughtfulness, while men are brash, risky, adventurous—typifies the way the Indrani Mukerjea scorcher of a scandal is being hashed by the media. All of a sudden, when it comes to the woman, being ambitious, grabby, craving for money and the good life becomes a bad word. And it’s not just the sexist misanthrope male-gazer who is making these jibes; even feminists find it setting their teeth on edge when such descriptives are attributed to women.

The script is unfailingly predictable and constant when a woman allegedly commits a crime—it’s her wanton ambition, insatiable greed, lust for the good life and social climbing that got her to rob, steal, cheat or kill. Now, how does having a...

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