Statement against Expressions of Misogyny and Hatred
Open Statement Against Expressions of Misogyny and Hatred
We, the undersigned members of the academic profession, researchers, independent scholars and activists, unequivocally condemn the sexist and misogynistic remarks made on public and social fora by Professor Kanak Sarkar of the Department of International Relations, Jadavpur University. Professor Sarkar has made such comments over a period of time in various media, and has targeted senior scholars, women, and ‘feminists’, through a long-standing campaign of abuse. While every individual is entitled to her or his personal opinion, Professor Sarkar’s recent public statements, widely reported in the media, commodify and denigrate women in a way that is not only unacceptable but deeply abhorrent, and will intensify gender stereotypes, exploitation and abuse.
Kanak Sarkar’s statements violate the principles of equality enshrined in the Constitution and offend the dignity and autonomy of women in a way that is deeply painful not only for his colleagues but also for his students, both male and female. He has gone out of his way to abuse and humiliate teachers and students, to vitiate a climate of learning in the classroom, and to spread social hatred. His comments are a disgrace to the academic profession, and bring shame to the institution to which he belongs. Earlier efforts to engage Professor Sarkar in rational debate have failed, and he has persisted in publicising his unscientific, obscurantist and retrogressive expressions of hatred towards women and minorities. We therefore feel that it is our duty to make our stand public, and to condemn Professor Sarkar and his sexist, misogynist and socially divisive views in the strongest possible terms.
- Supriya Chaudhuri, Professor Emerita, Department of English, Jadavpur University