In Every Story – Deeksha’s journey with Festival of Voices

With my forgetful memory, I fail to recall the initial days of Festival of Voices. I remember when my mother had told me to take it easy and to not make this project – my own personal quest for fighting patriarchal oppression. 

Festival of Voices started off as a ‘feminist hope’ for me. It was one of the mediums for re-claiming women’s voices, – something which my grandmother (who I lost last year) taught and practised while she struggled to be heard  by everyone in her life. To let ‘women’ speak for themselves was something that my family always preached and followed. Thus, I saw the project as an opportunity to contribute to this feminist legacy. This not only made Festival of Voices closer to me but it also became my own feminist endeavour to overcome personal loss.

Loss teaches you the limitations of love and makes you desire violence in numerous ways. I saw the same yearning for love in most women (I interviewed) and realisation of the similar feeling of betrayal and loss. This finally made me arrive at the conclusion that:

In every story,

I saw the woman

(I had lost)

In every story,

I saw the woman

I see in my mother

In every story, I saw,

What every woman didn’t want.

(To be oppressed).

Oppression comes in different forms and affects women’s lives. It ruins their mental well-being (in some cases) while making some stronger than they had imagined.

While nobody asks for this, but Festival of Voices and my own personal attachment to the stories reaffirm my belief that love is desired in ways that comes with a painful realisation of loss. However, while everyone wants to be free and loved, most women only end up being oppressed in that bargain.