SONGSOPTOK:Is the subject of sex taboo in your own personal family and friends circle? Do you talk freely about sex with your partner / children / friends? If no, why? If yes, what exactly do you talk about? Take this as an academic exercise, and do explain.

JAYA: I don’t call it taboo but there is some distinct limitation while talking with elders and juniors. With my partner of course I talk about it. Well with your companion you need to be open, otherwise the sexual interaction can’t be healthy and pleasurable. And also if there is any problem regarding mental or physical condition which might be hampering that particular situation, you need to share it with your partner.

SONGSOPTOK:In the society you live in, is the subject of sex a taboo? If yes, how do you explain it? Is it because of the religion that is practiced in your country? Or is because of your culture, or even the beliefs of the political parties in power?

JAYA:  We often regret that earlier Sex was a taboo in the society but now it is not. I don’t agree with this view totally. In the enlightened families you may see family members talking or expressing themselves freely but for a large part of the society it is not the same. And moreover even if it is discussed, it is among only men or only women. An open discussion among men and women is not much indulged in as yet. You can discuss about thieves, dacoits, drug dealers, politicians but not sex, because sex ix bad. Sex is crime, while others are not.  Look, sex is a physical organ primarily and secondarily an idea of adulthood. Now neither religion nor the politicians want adult people, they always like to swim in the minor’s sea. So we should not talk about them. But in the name of Culture we try to uphold this taboo even today. They say sex is for progeny. As if for progeny you should not enjoy the sexual interaction! This is funny and a huge hypocrisy of our society. “Man is a rational ANIMAL” this widely used coinage shows us the ANIMAL part, which is ignored cunningly in the name of Culture.

SONGSOPTOK:Do you think that the society today is more permissive compared to the time you were growing up? Do you think it is a good thing? Please let us have your detailed opinion.

JAYA:  Society is always liberal for males. For them everything is acceptable. In my growing period we also talked among our girl friends or in a very intimate circle, but never with family members or male friends. Nowadays some girls talk about sex freely but they are marked as “different”, not quite normal. I think it should be discussed freely but with a distinct “value”. By maintaining a border line of respect with our elders or the opposite sex, people can discuss everything under the sun, why not sex? 

SONGSOPTOK:Do you think that a permissive society is dangerous for teenagers, both girls and boys? Or is it on the contrary a good thing since it demystifies sexual acts and makes them look at it as something mundane and normal? Is that a good or a bad thing?

JAYA:  The term “Permissive society” means what? Permission for having sex before adulthood or a fair knowledge about sex? Adolescence is really a difficult time for men women both. This is the time when they discover their body little by little. Absolute permission is not wise decision, I think. The boy or girl is on a track of learning and proper sex is mostly enjoyed when the relevant persons have mature body and mind . Maturity cannot come fully at the age of puberty. So then their guardians should talk to them freely about it, its danger, its advantages etc. If you suppress a thing your curiosity will increase manifold and then there may come any fatal end. And yes free sex demystifies the myth of sex definitely.

SONGSOPTOK:History tells us that sex was not taboo in ancient societies. What, in your opinion, is the genesis of this attitude? Do you think that the rise of patriarchal societies all over the world is the main reason, where man gradually started looking upon the woman as his own property? Or is it mainly religious, where woman was treated as the root of all evils?

JAYA:  It is a reality that women’s body is basically different, where sex without protection can increase the child mother ratio among girl children. Forget about the religion or the patriarchal society, it is for the safety of the female adolescents’ free sex should not be encouraged. And for the male adolescents neither. Their bodies and minds are also in the process of development then. For a healthier future generation some restriction should be there, although free discussion is very important.

SONGSOPTOK:Do you believe sexual attitudes and acts to be normal like all other bodily functions or do you think that there is a special significance to sexual acts? In other words, do sexual acts need to be couched in special sentiments and sanctified by the institution of marriage? What is your own experience? What is the experience of people close to you?

JAYA:  Sex is a bodily function only for reproduction, but for proper enjoyment, the emotional part is very important. So marriage is important for progeny. We all know that the organized SOCIETY is ruthless for case of children out of wedlock. So from that point of view it is a necessity, but we cannot equate that with SANTIFICATION. It is just to avoid the social pressure. But I think if two bodies and minds want each other and if morality permits ( I mean no cheating on any third party) then sex is absolute necessary and welcome. Not only me but a lot of people around me also experience this social hypocrisy. In India a large part of population faces it. The society forces people to act hypocritically so that people go for marriage without loving each other just for the act of procreation and thus sex. And that’s why after few years one of the most important activities of life becomes lifeless.

SONGSOPTOK:In your opinion, does the taboo about sex give rise to repressive societies where men and women feel obliged to curb their natural instincts and take recourse to abuse, rape or incest?

JAYA:  Partially yes. I do agree with this opinion. Over repression and secrecy about sex gives rise to complexity. But not all of us teach our children properly. We indulge our boys to do anything without having a minimum responsibility towards society. And our girls get over panicky about it, which welcomes abuse, rape or incest.

SONGSOPTOK:This brings us to the issue of violence against women in different societies, where women and girls are abused and raped on a regular basis by members of their own families. Do you think that the taboo about sex is the main reason for such behavior? Would a change in attitudes actually make a difference to the position of women in such societies?

JAYA:  Our boys should be trained from a very early age of their life that EVERYBODY is equal. It’s never like SOME MEN ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS. All of our men should know sex is a both way drive. It’s necessary to have permission from your partner and active participation. If their curiosity is not satisfied through talking or doing all the things regularly with opposite sex this problem will increase day by day.

SONGSOPTOK:Have media in general and Internet in particular played a role in either enhancing or diminishing the taboo about sex? In what way?

JAYA:  Their advertisement is of very high level. I think at least girls have become more conscious these days.

SONGSOPTOK:Do you think that ultimately sex is all about power and domination, both for men and women? Why? What is your personal experience?

JAYA:: No.

We sincerely thank you for your time and hope we shall have your continued support.
Aparajita Sen



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