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The Bandit Queens


A young Indian woman finds the false rumors that she killed her husband ...
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Do you think violence can ever be justified?

Created: 03/13/24

Replies: 21

Posted Mar. 13, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 1019

Do you think violence can ever be justified?

Throughout the novel, we see that several of our female characters feel that violence is the only means left to them by which they can improve their circumstances. What do you think of that idea—do you think violence can ever be justified? Are there any other solutions that you can see for them?


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Tired Bookreader

Join Date: 08/19/11

Posts: 214

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Growing up in a home with serious domestic violence...this would be a resounding yes! Not just to end the current situation but to also keep it from affecting the next generation.


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
janeb

Join Date: 10/09/18

Posts: 49

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

“Ever”? Yes. In the novel though, is the men’s cruelty cause for the women to murder them? Seems extreme, but the women have few choices to change the situation. Farrah, for example, would her husband get arrested for abuse? Not likely, and if he did, what would happen when he was released? Abuse in this country has allowed women to reciprocate in self defense sometimes. That doesn’t seem likely in the cultural climate of India. Perhaps if the women expanded their support for each other to other women in the country, they could form a political party and change the system. Likely?


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
alycet

Join Date: 04/23/12

Posts: 182

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Violence is not justified in most religions. However, in the situations where these ladies were involved that was the only choice. Right now in the USA the debate is going on. If you kill an abuser during the act you are justified as defending yourself. Most victims are unable to fight back and resort to killing the abuser in their sleep or in a way they can't defend themselves.


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 1019

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

I find this a really hard question to answer. My gut feeling is to say no, it can't be justified. But then I look at four of the five women in the novel and I ask myself what choice they had - it was that or tolerate the abuse for the rest of their lives.


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PKH

Join Date: 01/29/21

Posts: 120

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Yes, I think it's justified. Otherwise these women could end up dead.


Posted Mar. 14, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
elise

Join Date: 04/22/11

Posts: 101

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

I struggled with this question throughout most of the book. I came to the conclusion that it would vary on a case by case basis. I started to feel like the killing in this book became easily accepted and a quick way to a better life.


Posted Mar. 15, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PinkLady

Join Date: 01/22/18

Posts: 192

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Immediate reaction is no. Easy answer unless violence is inflicted on a person on a regular basis. Maybe still not justified but absolutely understandable.


Posted Mar. 16, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
LauraI

Join Date: 12/01/21

Posts: 15

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Sadly, yes, in the case of self defense. The question is then, what is self defense? For me, if I was physically in danger, I would use violence. As an American woman in the 21st century, I am lucky that I have the ability to support myself and make my own choices, and should not have to resort to violence. The women in the novel are able to make some of their own choices, especially if they work together. Did they have to resort to violence? It seems that they did.


Posted Mar. 16, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kate

Join Date: 01/22/11

Posts: 95

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

I do believe it is justified in the case of self defense. Unfortunately for these woman, they had no other option since law enforcement would not have enforced anything. It is disheartening to think so many counties still do not protect their woman citizens.


Posted Mar. 16, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
tsquared

Join Date: 10/20/21

Posts: 25

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

When I was in college many years ago, I took a course in Philosophy titled Situational Ethics that discussed this very question. As the course name implies, the answers varied for each situation discussed. There was never a "yes always" or "no never" consensus. Since violence against women is so prevalent & accepted in this village & the male-dominated society in general, it is understandable that this is what these women knew & resorted to for their survival. While the men were entitled legally & culturally, the women had nothing without the permission or approval of their husbands. Divorce was a rare option. Given the callousness & constant mental & physical abusive behavior of Ramesh, Samir & the pedophile Darshan, I believe that the women were justified in striking out against them in a way that ended their abuse.


Posted Mar. 17, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
DianeP495

Join Date: 03/16/24

Posts: 8

RE: Do you think violence can ever ...

I am also conflicted. I feel like violence should never be an answer, but I would also want to defend myself and my children. To murder someone, I can’t imagine, but I can also see the choices for women in a country like this are very limited if not nonexistent.


Posted Mar. 18, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
LindaMonaco

Join Date: 04/13/22

Posts: 49

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Absolutely! When an individual has to choose between violation and violence, violence is the only reasonable response. The urge to protect and defend yourself and your children is natural and inborn.


Posted Mar. 18, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
katherinep

Join Date: 07/16/14

Posts: 387

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Of course, but the situation would have to be the determining factor.


Posted Mar. 19, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
vickys

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 73

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

What a horrible thought to contemplate… but these women had few options and so situations would determine if violence was warranted to save yourself, your children or others being targeted.


Posted Mar. 20, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
linnie

Join Date: 08/23/23

Posts: 25

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

In the U.S women have many more options yet these kinds of killings take place (and are prosecuted.)The defence is that the woman is isolated and sees no other option outside of killing her abuser.A man can take another’s life in self-defence with little condemnation. Why the double standard?


Posted Mar. 24, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jos

Join Date: 03/14/21

Posts: 156

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Absolutely …in self defense of bodily harm and to literally survive.
Just as a means to be profitable or vindictive absolutely not.


Posted Mar. 25, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
margek

Join Date: 12/26/23

Posts: 12

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

This is a tough one. Violence is not a simple cause and effect or easily defined. Self-defense is justified. Where is the line between revenge, malice, vigilantism, premeditation? I do not know. Everything can be justified or rationalized - but should it be? Protecting oneself or children is a natural instinct so is that violence? Again, I don’t know. If we all treated each other with love and respect we wouldn’t have to deal with violence.


Posted Mar. 26, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kdowney25

Join Date: 01/25/16

Posts: 189

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

I don’t think this is a distinct yes or no situation. Violence can certainly be justified if in self-defense. For the women in this book I think they saw the killings as their absolute only option, and a way of protecting themselves. For them, they were doing what they saw was their only way to protect themselves. As someone mentioned in an earlier comment, such action in the US though is often prosecuted, depending on the specific circumstances.


Posted Mar. 27, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
pamelak

Join Date: 09/08/23

Posts: 17

RE: The Bandit QueensDo you think violence can ever be ...

I agree with many others that self defense best justifies the use of violence. Sadly violence begets violence.


Posted Apr. 20, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
BuffaloGirl

Join Date: 01/13/18

Posts: 226

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Excerpted from my "to do the right thing, sometimes you have to do the wrong thing" answer:

Initially, when thinking about this question, my thinking was that violence should never be resorted to, but when I think about WWII and the French, Italian, etc. resistance movements, I become torn. Those brave individuals were integral to overcoming Hitler and the Nazis. Yet I see some of our citizens moving in the direction of violence in order to get their candidate elected to the White House and that is terrifying. In the end, I suppose it's all situational regarding the rightness of committing a wrong to get to a right.


Posted Apr. 23, 2024 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
taking.mytime's Gravatar
taking.mytime

Join Date: 03/29/16

Posts: 404

RE: Do you think violence can ever be ...

Yes, some circumstances justify violence - especially if it is in response to violence being enacted upon you. Then violence may be the only means of justification.


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