In tonight’s Dispatch: Indian women make inroads into religious leadership; Argentina investigates a sexist World Cup manual; a series about lesbian witches is coming to British TV; and a Czech charity has developed a beer for women with breast cancer.
How Indian women are breaking down barriers to religious leadership
The issue of women’s rights in India has come under scrutiny in recent years, thanks in large part to the high level of gender-based violence in the country.
However, there is one area where women are being given increasing power in India: religion. Young Indians living in urban areas are reportedly warming to the idea of women in the Hindu priesthood, and it is no longer unheard of to see women performing Hindu ceremonies such as the Upanayana (which marks a Hindu boy’s coming of age).
“If women are taking strides in other professions, why can’t they in the spiritual sphere?” says Neela Khadkikar, a Hindu priestess.
Manisha Shete is an education coordinator at the Jnana Prabodhini Institute in Pune, a town around 150km from Mumbai. The institute recently opened a programme for young women who hope to join the priesthood. “Our current batch has 20 women,” she says. “This was unthinkable 30 years ago.”
Read more on this story at Religion News.
Argentina investigates World Cup manual on how to seduce women
The Argentina Football Association (AFA) is set to investigate a manual distributed ahead of the 2018 World Cup in Russia that included a chapter on how to seduce women.
The manual was handed out at a course given by Russian language teacher Eduardo Pennisi at the AFA headquarters in Buenos Aires earlier this week. Titled Russian Language and Culture, it contained a chapter titled ‘What to do to have an opportunity with a Russian woman’.
“Russian ladies like men who take initiative,” read one section in the chapter. “If you don’t have confidence in yourself then you need to practice speaking with many women.”
Another read: “Normally, Russian women pay attention to important things, but of course, you will find women who pay attention to material things - on money, if you are attractive, what you tell them… Be selective.”
ESPN has more on this story here.
A TV show about lesbian witches is coming to British TV
A drama about a pair of lesbian witches is set to air on Sky 1 later in 2018.
A Discovery of Witches will tell the story of powerful witch Sarah Bishop (played by Doctor Who’s Alex Kingston) and her girlfriend Emily Mather (Valarie Pettiford). The series will focus on the couple’s dynamic as well as their relationship with Sarah’s niece, Diana (Teresa Palmer), who lives with them as she comes to terms with her own powers.
The series is based on Deborah Harkness’ book of the same name - and it might just be the first TV drama ever to explore an interracial romantic relationship between two 50-something witches.
“A Discovery of Witches is a bold contemporary love story beautifully adapted by Kate Brooke from the books by Deborah Harkness,” says Jane Tranter, executive producer of Bad Wolf, the production company behind the series.
“We can’t wait to introduce fans of the novels to our cast and to bring in a whole new audience to these extraordinary stories.”
Pink News has more on this story here.
A beer has been invented especially for breast cancer patients
A Czech breast cancer charity has developed a beer that’s formulated to appeal to the palates of women going through chemotherapy for the disease.
Mamma Beer has a sweeter taste than traditional beers, to allow for the fact that breast cancer treatment can intensify the bitterness of certain flavours. It is currently only available in the Czech Republic, where it has been dispensed through pharmacies and handed out for free at oncology hospitals.
As well as being non-alcoholic, the beer is also fortified with extra vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D and potassium, to help patients get the nutrients they need if they can’t stomach solid food.
Read more on this story here.
Stylist’s Visible Women campaign is dedicated to raising awareness of women who’ve made a difference, celebrating their success, and empowering future generations to follow their lead. See more from Visible Women here.
Images: Saksham Gangwar / Paloma / Unsplash / Getty Images / Sky 1