Images of resistance
The three images below teach us how society is transformed – by the courage and determination of the oppressed and marginalized; by tears of rage, and by stony cold resistance in the face of violent retaliation by entrenched power. It is not that these pioneers were fearless, but that they acted despite their fear.
The first shows Kairali TV camera-person Shajila Ali Fathima, tears running down her face as she continues filming the vandalism of Hindu right-wing mobs over the Sabarimala issue, despite being threatened and physically attacked (her neck was hurt, and she has since been advised a cervical collar and rest).
The second shows fifteen year old Elizabeth Eckford walking steadfastly past the hostile screams and stares of white segregationists on her first day of school in 1957, after the US Supreme Court outlawed racial segregation in schools.
And the third shows the Kalaram Temple satygraha, led by BR Ambedkar and BK Gaikwad in 1930, to fight for the right of Dalits to enter the temple. Almost nine decades later, Dalits still face immense hostility and violence towards their right to worship and participate in temple festivals.
Women are activists, men are devotees