THE INVISIBLE GENERATION’: QUESTIONING AGEISM, CHALLENGING MYTHS, REFASHIONING SELVES

  • Alka Singh Vasanta College for Women, Rajghat Fort, Varanasi, India
Keywords: Ageism, body, beauty myth

Abstract

The old age is perceived as a foreign body, said Simone de Beauvoir in her essay The Coming of Age (1970). Influenced by Sartre’s existentialism she emphasized the idea that the subject sees old age through the perception of others. It is a twin process of objectification: the look of others who sees female body as an object of hostility and also a woman’s image of herself who feels that the body is different from her. Jeannette King calls women who are over fifty “the invisible generation” in her book Discourses on Ageing in Fiction and Feminism: The Invisible Woman (2012). She asserts that woman loses her identity after fifty because a woman’s value has historically been determined by her reproductive ability, her beauty and sexuality. Gullette points out the absence of a discourse on ageism in feminism scholarship. The present paper explores the grounds of marginalization of ageing women in the Indian context from cultural and feminist standpoints and the paper aims to make ageing women visible in the literary and feminist discourses with special reference to four contemporary plays: Mangalam by PolieSengupta, Harvest by ManjulaPadmanabhan, Tripurari Sharma’s Bahu and Aurat by Rasheed Jahan.

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Published
2018-05-31
How to Cite
Singh, A. (2018). THE INVISIBLE GENERATION’: QUESTIONING AGEISM, CHALLENGING MYTHS, REFASHIONING SELVES. Proceedings of the International Conference on Future of Women, 1(1), 30-36. https://doi.org/10.17501/icfow.2018.1104