Draupadi – a staunch feminist?

If I were to say that the birth of feminism dates back to 500 BCE I am not blaspheming. Sure it does sound like I am contradicting facts for the records state that the first wave of feminism was born between 1848-1920. I would like to remind you about Draupadi’s marriage to the five pandava brothers, which was the result of the victory of Pandavas in the Kurukshetra war against Kauravas. Granted the circumstances that led to fraternal Polyandry could be regarded by most as somewhat hilarious, as Kunti, the mother of five pandavas, without looking at the prize Arjun had won, had ordered Arjun to share the prize equally among his brothers. However, even though feminism has expressed itself in myriad forms in all walks of life in the 21st century, my search for a woman married to five husbands (as in polygamy) reached a dead end. I did stumble upon Tibetan tradition of a woman having more than one husband but those instances fail to surpass Draupadi’s achievement in a male dominated society. Lord Krishna had come up with an excuse for what had ensued as the outcome of Panchali’s (a woman married to five husbands) prayers to Lord Shiva asking for a husband with five qualities. My highly imaginative mind dared to venture into that unknown period of time when Draupadi attended social occasions with five strong, muscular and handsome husbands following her with the rest of the community gaping in awe at her audacity and I must admit I could not help but feel admiration for this graceful, ravishingly beautiful polygamist. Even the severest of feminist critic would have to agree that this was feminism at its highest. 



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