One of the most traumatic prison which seems to be operating all the time and which seeks to stifle the individuality of a person is the social prison of bodily judgement. It provides no respite to any kind of deviation from the “ideal body image” created by the social lens and traps those who does not conform to the required body type. Body Shaming is one of the painful realities of modern living as it thrives upon its active circulation through popular media which acts as a powerful brainwashing device. The unfortunate internalisation of this phenomenon results in depression amongst youngsters. Is there an escape from this social prison?
There was a kind of oddity felt by Nikhil whenever he imagined his family tree. It was very different from the pictures which he saw in his textbooks back then as they constituted the typical image of a man and a woman standing together with a child and named it “family” thereby freezing the alternate models right from the beginning.
“Why is it so difficult for you to reply?” a loud voice confronted Siddhant as he stood there, dumbstruck, as clueless as ever. “I was just about…” Exactly!” interrupted Bhumi who was fuming with anger at his grave error of not being prompt in his response. Sitting at the restaurant chair Siddhant flushed with embarrassment as he had no words to describe his state. He was probably guilty for his negligence and was speculating to initiate an apology when suddenly Bhumi shouted, “Now you will not speak. How typical of you to evade matters of importance. You have not changed even an inch in all these years.” Siddhant was silent once again.
“Myself Rani from India”
These words are uttered by our protagonist, Rani Mehra- a simplistic, naive doll who was all set to be married. A fairy tale marriage it seemed to her with the man she loved, Rani was living a dream, until her dream was shattered by the unpredictable turn of events, as his fiancee, Vijay, called off the wedding. Thus, began the vibrant journey of our “Queen” where she shed the chains of self pity and wore the crown of blossoming self worth. Weaved around a very conventional plot, Vikram Bahl’s “Queen” is all about the different road taken by him in reaching his predictable destination. Thus instead of the “What happens”, this movie is more about “How it happens”.
“At every crossroads on the path that leads to the future, tradition has placed its guardians to control one’s movement to preserve its unquestionable legacy.”
The door slammed, leaving Rati behind, immersed in tears.
She was on a wrecked ship which was leading nowhere,
Taking her miles away into an isolated land
Which lacked any sense of belonging,
Did she find herself?
They should take, who have the power
And they should keep who can
These magnificent lines of William Wordsworth which appear in the beginning of the novel effectively captures the essence of Desai’s path breaking masterpiece which was shortlisted for the Booker prize in 1984. These lines reflect the power dynamics which is dealt with in the novel as the story narrates the agony of communalization and disintegration of Urdu language post partition due to the hegemonic emergence of the “Hindiwallahs”.
Of woeful fears of future ill
That earth-folk haunt,
Let me, as radiant meadow rill,
-Robert William Service
Palak was not the topper of the class as her mathematics always spoilt her total aggregate. She was not into sports as well as she lacked an athletic body. A short and plump girl with decent looks, she was a mediocre in every sphere of life. In spite of being an amalgamation of all the possible ordinaries, there was something extraordinary in her. She was a bundle of enthusiasm and thus radiated sheer exuberance. It was the aura of vibrancy that she carried with her that she was called the “little sunshine” of the class.
“Her world was not down on any map, yet, it was as dear to her as reality.”
“What is your name?” asked a stern voice. A man dressed in a typical dhoti enquired.
“Sanya?” Very strange. He had heard this name for the first time in his life.
Mr. Deshpande was very proud of his rich Mahastrian lineage. A middle class married man with a son and a young daughter, he was very conservative in his way of living. Be it the vibrant Ganpati Visarjan or the beef ban, he seemed to view himself as the upholder and preserver of his reverent culture