Countering Violence with Words
by Meera Srikant
Dhamayanthi wears many professional hats and works as an executive producer on television, radio jockey, programme manager on radio, dialogue writer in films and serials, music manager, journalist and writer. She has been an active part of all aspects of media output on television and radio including programming, marketing and sales. She has been a part of several popular media organizations across formats including Pengal Malar magazine, Puthiya Thalaimurai, Suryan FM and Hello FM. She has written 7 books and more than 300 short stories in Tamil which have been published by leading popular and literary magazines. Her books can also be found on the syllabus of the Manonmaniam Sundaranar University and Pondicherry University. Dhamayanthi tells us how she believes dialogue is critical to create more awareness about gender violence.
Why is this issue important to you?
From my personal experience I can say that women find no catharsis, no means of sharing their emotions in a genuine way. Women always wear a mask, are great storytellers, weaving tales to protect the image of their man. But I feel most of the women are depressed. I had an aunt who would talk to the plants. We were young and we thought she was nuts. Only later we found out that our uncle had had several affairs and she had not wanted to let others know.
What do you feel most strongly about?
What affects me strongly is the fact that no one reacts to instances of gender violence unless it becomes personal. We become mere spectators. As human beings, that is the worst thing to do. Even if you dislike someone, you must stand by them if they are being targeted subjected to violence. I think there should be a legal reformation to recognise verbal abuse as an offense.
What do hope to achieve through your activity for Prajnya?
There is no dialogue in public places about violence since there is a stigma attached to it. I would like to initiate dialogue about violence, about the inner cycle.
What are the three thing that need to be done to keep the initiative alive?
Write, write daily, write throughout your life.