Sunday, April 26, 2015

My thoughts on Vogue’s “My Choice” video going viral

Gender equality in a male-dominated society has always been a sensitive issue to handle. The new wave of women empowerment which is sweeping the nation attempts to do just that. The short film titled “My Choice” by Vogue features Bollywood’s top actress Deepika Padukone in a good social initiative on women empowerment. Is she able to drive the message home? To an extent, Yes .. but not completely.

The video relies more on sensationalism to get the point across. I do tend to agree with some of the statements. “My body, My mind, My choice – to wear the clothes I like, even as my spirit roams naked” is a great start to the video. It says a lot about freedom for women, to lead their life the way they want and not be judged about the choices they make. The message was loud and clear, women empowerment is here to stay! Another thought worth a mention “You are my choice, I am not your privilege” perfectly echoes the sentiments of the women whose partners take them for granted and treat them as the inferior gender. Domestic violence and violence towards women in general, is an evil in the society which needs to be eradicated.

However, the short film continues to go overboard with opinions which seem feminist. Be it a man or a woman, there should be a place for morals and ethics in everybody’s life. Some of the comments made are just not in good taste. Promoting or glorifying adultery in such a manner is completely unacceptable.

The video completely fails to address the problems and hardships of the under privileged women living in the rural parts of the country. Just flashing few random images of villagers in the midst of other shampoo models is not enough when all the comments made in the video are completely irrelevant towards them! Gender equality is a lot deeper issue for these women than the women living a comfortable life in the cities. Although 2 minutes is too less, issues like female infanticide, illiteracy and domestic violence (which was touched masterfully in the “Boys don’t cry” video) should take center stage.

The irony of the entire situation is that both parties primarily involved in the making and presentation of this video, Vogue and Bollywood, have a history of objectifying women. Considering these obvious loopholes, this short film made with good intentions lacks depth of thought and execution. We need a slightly bigger film, because 2 minutes is not sufficient time to discuss about such a delicate matter.

I will summarize everything by saying “Having a choice is always a good thing, but if you don’t use it wisely, you will end up making a bad choice”.