We’re within the 12 months 2020, probably essentially the most eventful because the World Wars, and conversations round well being, patriarchy, feminism, sexism, colourism, nepotism, racism and plenty of such ‘isms’ have taken centre stage. The coronavirus pandemic and ensuing lockdown has been fairly an enlightening time for many of us. And though many have whiled away the pandemic by baking bread, scrolling by social media and making new Instagram pages, many others used social media to get knowledgeable and spotlight a few of the greatest points plaguing the world, and the youth ought to get some credit score. One could dub millennials, Gen Z and the TikTok era as a era of followers, however being ‘woke’ is the most recent development, and everybody needs to maintain up. Everybody, however Bollywood it appears.
In keeping with the Merriam-Webster dictionary’s definition, woke means being “conscious of and actively attentive to vital info and points (particularly problems with racial and social justice)”, or to place it merely, deal with every individual like an individual regardless of their race, faith, gender, caste, sexual desire or another attribute you’ll contemplate a ‘distinction’. We frequently accuse Hollywood celebrities of appropriating Indian tradition, however ignore Bollywood’s personal insensitivity in direction of and appropriation of different, and our personal, cultures.
Dig deep, and everyone knows how problematic Bollywood may be, let’s not even get into the entire ‘nepotism, drug, film mafia’ drama. Bollywood has all the time been identified for it stereotypical portrayals, misogynistic leads and plot traces, and its patriarchy-glorifying legacy. However these are the type of movies which have a A-list star-studded solid and are profitable on the Field Workplace. Bollywood can get Kareena Kapoor Khan to do Blackface (she had an entire factor in Khushi) and giggle it off as a gag, or worse the extraordinarily unrealistic and offensive portrayal of homosexuals is used to chop the stress by making the lead hero uncomfortable, so it might be an extended journey for them within the sensitivity division. Be it the edited out scene from Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge the place Farida Jalal principally shames Kajol for her pores and skin color, the colour-shaming of Beyonce within the Khaali Peeli tune Beyonce Sharma Jayegi, or the stereotypical portrayal and cultural appropriation of Arab tradition within the Laxmmi Bomb song, Burj Khalifa, Bollywood actually must get with the instances, listed here are a few of Bollywood’s most culturally inappropriate, bordering racist and majorly insensitive moments:
When Khaali Peeli stars, Ananya Panday and Ishaan Khatter should have danced to the beats of Beyonse Sharma Jayegi (beforehand Beyonce) they by no means would have guessed the flak the tune would obtain due to its colourist lyrics. The lyrics go, “tujhe dekh ke goriya Beyonce sharma jayegi”. Followers from the Beyhive apologized to Queen Bey for the inappropriate tune lyrics that promoted colourism and the makers shortly modified the Beyonce to duniya. Good save guys, that’s nearly as a lot effort as Glow and Beautiful.
Lead actors Akshay Kumar and Kiara Advani within the Laxxmi Bomb tune Burj Khalifa seem like they’re performing as a part of a tourism advert for Dubai. It looks as if the tune comes out of the creativeness of somebody who solely is aware of about Dubai from Bollywood movies and Aladdin. The lyrics make no sense in any respect, Burj Khalifa looks as if a compelled plug and apparently all Arabs do is put on lengthy robes and bob round within the sand, like in Ali Baba or one thing.
All of us love DDLJ, however an edited out scene from the film reveals Farida Jalal happening fairly the monologue to Simran, her ‘ghenhu’ (wheat) colored daughter (her phrases not mine) about how she simply squeezes her cheeks and wishes no rouge, not like her daughter who will solely discover love in India as Indian males admire ‘ghenhu’ color (as soon as once more, her phrases).
Just like the entirety of the film Khushi, this bit with Kareena dancing round in Black face and an Afro was extraordinarily racist and will have been edited out. Speaking about Black face, Shraddha Kapoor additionally as soon as appeared in an Afro and significantly tanned pores and skin on the duvet of Grazia in August 2016.
Deepika Padukone’s ‘China’ look in Chandni Chowk to China was complete cultural appropriation, from the poker straight hair, her eye make-up to make her look extra Oriental Asian and even the lipstick dab like Geisha’s, who would paint solely the centre of their lips. Though Geishas are part of Japanese tradition, it was nonetheless appropriation.
Most just lately Bala was criticised for exhibiting Bhumi Pednekar for ‘brown’ face, the actor, who’s significantly light-skinned was portrayed as a darkish skinned lady who’s obsessed together with her pores and skin color. We have now loads of dusky actors in Bollywood, so this was a straightforward clear up, nonetheless exhibiting a light-skinned Yami Gautam as extra fascinating compared to Bhumi was mistaken on so many ranges. Bollywood must do a greater job at exhibiting all types of Indian magnificence, we aren’t all simply tall, honest and blue-eyed.
Let’s speak accents! There was completely no want for Deepika’s characters in Pleased New 12 months and Chennai Specific to have excessive Marathi or Tamil twang, identical to Anushka Sharma’s pretend and compelled Gujarati accent in Harry Met Sejal. To not overlook each outdated Parsi uncle along with his ‘deekra’ in each Bollywood film. Folks don’t speak like this anymore!
Bollywood loves appropriating Indian cultures, consider each Muslim household ever seen on the silver display screen and ‘Begum’, ‘Tauba Tauba’ and ‘Tashreef’ are the phrases that can cross your thoughts, and that’s all of the nuance Bollywood can provide you. And one way or the other each Muslim character is wearing essentially the most conventional of how, this blogger (under) will get it:
And if we transfer on to Bollywood and homophobia, be it the effeminate additional in Prem Aggan who will get brushed apart as ‘homosexual’ as if it had been an insult, or each function Bobby Darling has performed, Bollywood basically portrays homosexuals in a destructive and derogatory means. Dostana diminished gay relations to a joke, and though Ayushmann Khurrana starrer-Shubh Mangal Zyaada Savdhan was an excellent try, one some stage, in an unlucky means, the film was essentially the most vanilla try of exhibiting the struggles of the LGBTQ neighborhood.
What’s the most culturally and socially insenstive and inappropriate factor that Bollywood has performed in keeping with you?