Mallika Sengupta

(27 March 1960 - 28 May 2011 / Nadia, West Bengal / India)

Tell Us Marx - Poem by Mallika Sengupta

She who spun rhymes, wove blankets
The Dravidian woman who sowed wheat
In the Aryan man’s fields, reared his kids
If she isn’t worker, then what is work?



Tell us, Marx, who is a worker who isn’t
New industrial workers with monthly wages
Are they the only ones who work?
Slum life is the Industrial Age’s gift
To the worker’s housewife

She draws water, mops floors, cooks food
After daily grind at night
She beats her son and weeps
She too isn’t worker?

Then tell us, Marx, what is work!
Since housework is unpaid labour, will women simply
Sit at home and cook for the revolutionary
And comrade he is alone who wields hammer and sickle!
Such injustice does not become You



If ever there is a revolution
There will be heaven on earth
Classless, stateless, in that enlightened world
Tell us, Marx

Will women then become the handmaidens of revolution?


[Translated by Sanjukta Dasgupta]


Comments about Tell Us Marx by Mallika Sengupta

  • Ramesh Rai (10/2/2014 7:54:00 AM)


    While i was 15 i used to return to home by 12 night till then i was spending with so called revolutionary who knew to fire on other shoulder. my mother waited sitting on rock till late night. most of the time she closed the door and then i knocked the door. she was ready with broom sticks. daily i confessed to come in time but daily repeated the same thing. it contd upto 78. but i had never listen such question. none asked marks to reply this. fantastic one. during 78 i wrote hindi poem posted with title AUCTION. you will get reflection. thnx for sharing. (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Monday, March 19, 2012



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