Open Page

When films objectify women

more-in

If rapes are rampant in India, part of the blame goes to Bollywood and other film industries

If rapes are rampant in India, Bollywood, south and several other local movie industries cannot escape blame for objectifying women. From the 1970s to the 1990s, certain grades of movies had a mandatory rape scene.

A common scene in all grades of film was of a women being molested and a superhuman hero coming to her rescue. If the woman was the heroine, she would be saved. Otherwise, she would be killed brutally and the whole movie would revolve around revenge. Most villains were shown as sexual perverts, and Bollywood had special faces who appeared as rapists in most films they acted. Strangely, the audience loved them in those roles.

There are many film songs that commoditise the female body. Most songs follow a particular format. We might have got used to it or we ignore it, but a whole generation in our country grew up believing that life is like what is shown in film. We believe many things shown to us without questioning, the way devotees used to worship their TV sets when the Ramayana series was broadcast on Doordarshan in the late 1980s.

Now, there are hyperlocal film industries which seem to generate content solely based on commoditising the female body. The crowds seem to be lapping up B-grade content.

Copying films, village fairs organise “item dances”, which is the most exciting event for seas of men. Irrespective of age, all men attend them. This is the sad reality of the country we live in. And as citizens what do we do? We dance to those tunes and enjoy them in every way until some spine-shaking scary incident jolts us. However, the worst is yet to come because of the proliferation of online content.

The news that a huge number of Indians searched for the video of a recent horrifying rape on various platforms just confirms the mental state of the country.

parnab.xyz@gmail.com

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jan 21, 2020 5:16:11 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-page/when-films-objectify-women/article30367644.ece

Next Story