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Elimination of Gender Stereotypes From Law UPSC NOTE


Elimination of Gender Stereotypes From Law

  • The Supreme Court unveils handbook to eliminate gender stereotypes from law.

  • Career woman, fallen woman, faithful or obedient wife, eve-teasing, hermaphrodite: the Supreme Court has identified these words and many others as gender-unjust terms that are often heard in Indian courts. 

  • In a new handbook released, the top court offered the correct terms that should be used instead: woman, woman, wife, street sexual harassment, intersex.

  • The 30-page Handbook on Combating Gender Stereotypes aims to free the judiciary and the legal community from the mechanical application of gender stereotypical language in judgments, orders, and court pleadings.

  • The handbook deals with the “so-called inherent characteristics” of women. One of the identified stereotypes is the idea that women are “overly emotional, illogical, and cannot take decisions”.

  • The reality is that a “person’s gender does not determine or influence their capacity for rational thought”, the handbook points out.

  • It also refers to assumptions made about a woman’s character based on her expressive choices, such as the clothes she wears, and her sexual history. 

  • Such assumptions may impact the judicial assessment of her actions and statements in a case involving sexual violence.

  • For instance, they diminish the importance of consent in sexual relationships.

  • Reliance on stereotypes about women is liable to distort the law’s application to women in harmful ways. 

  • Even when the use of stereotypes does not alter the outcome of a case, stereotypical language may reinforce ideas contrary to our constitutional ethos. 

  • Language is critical to the life of the law. Words are the vehicle through which the values of the law are communicated. Words transmit the ultimate intention of the lawmaker or the judge to the nation. 

  • However, the language a judge uses reflects not only their interpretation of the law, but their perception of society as well.



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Elimination of Gender Stereotypes From Law UPSC NOTE
Elimination of Gender Stereotypes From Law UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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