What is Bollywood? In a nutshell - heightened emotions, repetitive plots, grand budgets and some complimentary misogyny. In a year of movements such as #metoo and laws being abolished, like those which made women the property of men, our film industry does not fail to drag everything down.
While we do hear of some strong women-centric films and songs, what is shocking is that even in 2018, there are still movies, and more prevalently - songs which reek of blatant sexism.
Here’s a list of sexist songs that drip misogyny in a time where our women are trying to take over the world with their talent and break the society-imposed glass ceilings.
Sweety Tera Drama, Bareli ki Barfi
I mean, what is it with Indians and the pelvis of a woman? Is it not 2018 already? I am astounded by the fact that we’re still placing songs such as Bareli Ki Barfi in our movies. Interestingly, the female lead in the story of ‘Bareli Ki Barfi’ happens to be a modern 21st century girl who does not understand why she’s different from any guy her age. The same character is seen dancing to lyrics which go “kamar lachkae toh laakho gir jaae”. Ironic, no?
High rated Gabru, Nawaabzaade
Aaaaaaaaand we’re back to addressing women by their skin colour and how their tiny waists and fatal-yet-futile tantrums are driving a really desirable, well-to-do, ‘high rated gabru’. You know what’s really audacious? The fact that this song features Shraddha Kapoor, who’s played the intense and powerful character of Haseena Parker in the recent past. What is even more astounding is that this song was originally a single by Guru Randhawa which was released in 2017. Wasn’t it bad enough in itself that the makers had to reuse the song in their movie to make sexism more apparent?
I tried really hard to look for songs which do not talk about a woman’s ‘kamariya’ but, I guess there aren’t many. Jacky Bhagnani and Kritika Kamra starrer Mitro brings in the kamariya notion yet again. Why aren’t we describing our women better? Aren’t we the land of Galib and Kalidas? The fact that this song will played at every office party, every wedding and every sangeet pricks the feminist in me so bad.
Tu Cheez Badi hai Mast Mast, Machine
Really? Are.we.really.still.there? This is nothing but evident objectification of women. You’re calling women a ‘cheez’ right at her face and are expecting her to dance to this. It is annoying enough that it became such a hit back in the 90’s. The fact that someone reused this in a movie makes me wonder where we went wrong as a society.
Patola banke, Blackmale
We come back to the glorification of ‘gora rang’ and how that makes men drool. Not cool nor flattering. We’re not even the land of the fair skinned. Can we leave our obsession with fair skin back in 1947, please? I am concerned about the picture of perfection that we’re painting for our young women. How are we not taking offence on something so preferential?
Chote Chote Peg, Sonu ki Titu Ki Sweety
Coming from Honey Singh’s genre of specialization, that is - misogyny, this song calls a woman ‘bad girl’ because she likes whiskey. Sure. How could you ever favour alcohol and be good? You should like making sandwiches and waving back to your abusing alcoholic husband to be a ‘good girl’. No? This song further addresses that the woman should stay home with a barbie doll. Thank you, for very aptly putting us back in our places.