The CBSE 10 Std Board Exam stirred controversy when one of its reading passages had several ‘anti-women’ sentences, endorsing retrograde views of women
In a shocking development, the CBSE 10 Std Board Exam stirred controversy when one of its reading passages had several ‘anti-women’ sentences, endorsing retrograde views. The exam held on Saturday had a passage that lamented the loss of parental authority in the twentieth century with the ’emancipation of women’. The question has led to outrage among students and parents alike.
CBSE question irks students
The passage claimed that parental authority in the 19th century depended on the husband being the master of the house and the wife giving him ‘formal obedience’. It read, “It was her best plan, to fall back on the authority saying, ‘Your father has forbidden it’. Children and servants were in this way taught to know their place”.
Comparing the docile 19th century woman to the 20th century, it added, “In 20th century became fewer and feminist revolt was the result. Father’s word had no longer the authority of holy writ and married women now retained their identity and some pursued separate careers”. The passage concluded that the ’emancipation of the wife destroyed the parent’s authority over children. In bringing the man down from his pedestal the wife and mother deprived herself, in fact, of the means of discipline’.
Stoking the row further, CBSE offered four options for the title – ‘Who is responsible for indiscipline among children?’, ‘Collapse of discipline at home’, ‘place of children and servants at home’, ‘child psychology’. Aghast at the archaic sentiments expressed by the board, Balaji Sampath, founder of Chennai-based education NGO Aid India, shared a post on Facebook, condemning the paper. He alleged, “This is the same type of stupid thinking that blames rape victim for the rape”.
Unbelievable! Are we really teaching children this drivel?
Clearly the BJP Government endorses these retrograde views on women, why else would they feature in the CBSE curriculum? @cbseindia29 @narendramodi ?? pic.twitter.com/yplSAvG91Z
— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) December 12, 2021
Similarly, Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi lashed out at CBSE tweeting, “Unbelievable! Are we really teaching children this drivel? Clearly the BJP Government endorses these retrograde views on women, why else would they feature in the CBSE curriculum?”. The CBSE is currently scrutinising the matter and experts will decide on the correct answer as per interpretations.
Recently, CBSE had run into trouble when the Class 12 Sociology subject paper had an ‘inappropriate’ question on the 2002 Gujarat riots. The question read, “The unprecedented scale and spread of anti-Muslim violence in Gujarat in 2002 took place under which government?” The options for the question were: “Congress”, “BJP”, “Democratic” and “Republican”. Immediately, CBSE called it “inappropriate”, and promised “strict action” against “responsible persons”.