LYRIC

Second Sex – first English single by The Anupam Roy Band.

The numerous incidents of violence against women have been burdening our society since time immemorial. Discussions about these have become very common in our social milieu since the recent incident of rape and murder in Delhi (2012). However, it did not begin there and it does not end there. This song is a reaction to every such act of violence. It does not represent any single case, but tries to question the social structure which facilitates this repression.

‘Society and consequence
Overriding commonsense
The future tense and stories of the wild’

The song ‘Second Sex’ believes and hence I believe that rape is not an individual but a social act. Rape is one of the most powerful expressions of violence against women, probably because of its direct attack on age-old and ridiculously patriarchal social norms about the “chastity” of a woman’s body. The very act of rape of a woman is one that intends to not just violate her physically, but violate her sense of being, her social identity so much so that the victim’s name needs to be withheld from the media and from public knowledge, in order to ‘protect her image’.

Our society or any society for that matter obsesses over the image of the ‘good woman’. She never steps out of her house after 10 pm, never wears ‘revealing clothes’, never smokes a cigarette or drinks alcohol. If she happens to do any one of these things, she is no longer a good woman and hence susceptible to violation. In other words, she cannot act like a man. If she does, there are ‘monsters’ out on prowl waiting to ‘punish’ her.

This is how our society legitimizes the act of rape, by shifting focus from the perpetrator to the victim. ‘Second Sex’ believes that rape has got nothing to do with sexual attraction and everything to do with asserting power over the so-called ‘weak’ or ‘vulnerable’ sex and humiliating the latter. Hence,

‘No matter how you wear your skirt
You can always get hurt’

Finally, the song rejects the typically ‘masculine’ sentiments of all those men who, after every such incident, make promises of ‘protecting’ women – of fighting for the ‘mothers, sisters and daughters’ of the nation. Do they not realize that this very sense of ‘chivalry’ reinforces the ‘softer’, ‘weaker’, more ‘feminine’ and hence, more violable image of the woman? Why don’t we think of safety in terms of freedom rather than in terms of protection? Because-

‘She’s not your mother,
She’s not your sister,
She’s not your daughter,
She needs no protector.’

Second Sex Lyrics

Verse 1:

come out, come out and play
looks like a better day
the smoke has flown away, it’s over.
roads are wide, streets are clear
demons dead and nothing to fear
sing it loud so that we can hear its over.
we close our eyes and try to see
we are better than we used to be
and think that days are safer than the nights.
no matter how you wear your skirt
you can always get hurt
and wonder what’s the glory, what’s the pride?
there’s nothing to conquer, no kingdom to find.
there’s nothing so holy, it’s all in your mind.

Chorus

She’s not your mother,
and she’s not your sister,
and she’s not your daughter
she needs no protector.

Verse 2:

come out, come out and play
that’s what the lovers say
good wind is here to stay, it’s over.
take your time and choose your seat
feel your lungs and feel your feet
theories are obsolete, it’s over!
society and consequence.
overriding common sense
future tense and stories of the wild.
no matter how you wear your skirt
you can always get hurt
and wonder what’s the glory, what’s the pride?
there’s nothing to conquer, no kingdom to find.
there’s nothing so holy, it’s all in your mind.

Chorus:

She’s not your mother,
and she’s not your sister,
and she’s not your daughter
she needs no protector.

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