A Few Observations on Women

My lovely sister-in-law, Jenn, asked me to bring her back a wrap that she can use to carry her daughter, Morgan, around in. I started looking around the streets to see if I could figure out how women here carry their babies, and in the process made a few observations about women in Dhaka.

In other countries it has been obvious how women carry their babies. In Bolivia, women carry their babies on their backs by using a piece of woven cloth. The babies hang out there all day, and for several years are carried that way, while the mother works. In Africa (or the countries I have visited there), it is much the same. The cloth is different, and it is tied differently, and the baby’s position is different on the back.

Here, I noticed a few things. First of all, looking around the streets of Dhaka, the majority of the people I saw were men. I would say probably about 80% of the people on the streets were men. Secondly, what females were walking around did not have babies with them. Now, this is a bit odd because the birth rate in Bangladesh is quite high, so you would expect to see more babies around! The small children I did see were generally running around the streets without their parents. And the babies I did see were usually with women who were begging on the side of the road, and were being carried on their hip using an arm. One arm for the baby, one arm for tap tap tapping on car windows for spare change.

My guess is that most people who can afford it have a maid or nanny who takes care of the babies, or the babies stay at home with the mother and/or grandparents. I also expect that in rural areas, it would be very different and that there you would see similar strategies of baby carrying as in other parts of the world – the mother’s working with the babies on their back, but I can’t say for sure, never having noticed when I have been in rural areas here.

Just thought I would share these observations! It has also taught me that I should be more observant…how can I not have noticed all these things on previous trips!

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Posted in dhaka | travel | work Submitted by Meg on Wed, 2010-04-21 12:01

Thanks for looking!

Submitted by Jenn (not verified) on Wed, 2010-04-21 13:47.

Thanks again for looking for me! Who knows where you might travel next and maybe there will be something there! :) It is interesting though... where are all the children?

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