Women have been taught, nurtured, scolded, discriminated against for their choice of career, clothes, doings, and whatnot. It took several on-road protests by leaders and feminists all around the world to call out and bring out such prejudices. But despite of years struggles and fights, women are still not being treated as equals and discriminated against in many parts of the globe.
Mass media having a great reach has the power to influence many. There have been several women-oriented, empowering, feminist flicks but then there are also certain oppressive and not-a-joke yet claimed to be funny dialogues and storylines against women.
The movie Dikkiloona starring Santhanam, Anagha on the lead directed by Karthik Yogi released last week in Zee 5. This movie had a wide range of critiques but one strong review was for a particular scene and dialogue from the movie over the Internet. The scene went viral for its oppressive dialogue against women.
In the scene, Santhanam calls out and advises the female lead saying, “Living as per your wish isn’t freedom rather others should like and approve the way we live, that is what is called true freedom.” He even comments on the actor’s dress by saying, “What kind of a dress is this? Looks like a pull can rip it off. Is this what you call freedom?”
This dialogue is problematic on so many levels not just for the filmmaker’s conservative writings but also for their lack of responsibility to portray it on the big screen that has such a huge following. It is the modern era of 2021 and still pointing out a woman’s choice of clothing and illogically defining freedom seems troublesome.
One, Freedom is subjective. It means to travel the world for one or to just binge-watch their favorite shows in their living room to another. But it is not oppressing our personal feelings for the pressure and wants of others.
Two, Clothing is a personal choice and nobody else gets a say in it except for themselves. Any person can wear anything they want, however, they want and wherever they want.
Three, Pulling one’s dress? This kind of irrational saying is not acceptable. Nobody here should pull anyone’s dress. In that case, as Chinmayi Sripada in her Instagram story stated, “One small pull and the veshti will fall!” The thought to pull or hold of someone itself is fundamentally wrong in every sense. Let others be! Spread positivity!
Four, such jokes on dad’s little princess, boy bestie, women’s clothes, oppressed classes, women are degrading and old-fashioned. Time to move on and create heartfelt comedies.
The beautiful part of this incident is the way several users of the Internet lashed out at the moviemakers for this one dialogue. Now, that’s a little proof of how well our society is changing towards such oppressive and discriminatory portrayals.
There were even referenced videos of Vetrimaran questioning a guy and telling him that there’s nothing wrong in wearing what a woman wants along with this Santhanam’s dialogue is also trending in social media. Many people and celebrities shared, posted, and questioned about it.
Although there’s a long road ahead, this incident sheds a little ray of hope and light for those struggling to attain complete equality.