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In India, women are revered in religion and mythological lore. In real life? 68% of Indian women are victims of domestic violence, as reported by Save Our Sisters, an organization that works to prevent young women from becoming trapped in the world of human trafficking and promotes their education and well-being.

This shocking discrepancy between the imaginary and the all-too-real is acutely captured in Save Our Sisters’ latest campaign: Abused Goddesses. The images, part photograph and part painting, feature beautiful religious figures with haunting scars. The use of traditional symbolism incites reactions of squeamishness, of disgust, of pain. Most importantly, it succeeds in challenging the concept of what it means to be a woman in a part of the world where nearly 250,000 crimes against women are reported on a yearly basis. 

"Pray that we never see this day," the ads implore. I certainly will.

 

 

Images via Scoop Whoop

 

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