An idea in time is seen as a revolution, but an idea before time is taken to mean a rebellion. It embeds itself in our mind like a thorn, pricking it with its sheer audacity and driving itself deeper and deeper, in an urge to break free from the prejudices that we hold dear and concrete. Clashing egos and traditional attitudes serve as catalysts that hinder us from lifting the lances forged in raging fires burning bright with new ideas that promise significant changes in the society that we choose to live in. We would rather choose to defend ourselves with the shields carved out of the rustic customs of our yesteryears than be subjected to the pain of seeing our perception of life be replaced with the coaxing words of the youth of today.
The journey up till now has been long and arduous. From the formative years of mankind’s existence when the fairer sex was shunned for even bringing into this world one of its own kind to an era where we live in a society of hash-tag feminism and women empowerment. The world has changed and it is true, but how many among us actually succeed in distinguishing the thin veils between real and ethereal? The recent storm of debate induced by Vogue’s “My Choice” video is fueled by its attempt to elevate the position of women and portray her as an infinite entity. Garnering influence from the current trends of conversations that we divulge ourselves into, what has had its targeted audience enraptured in more ways than one is the strong message of the independence of women that it seeks to proliferate amongst the masses. As inconspicuously as possible, and as blasphemous as it may sound to my critics, Vogue made sure to make good use of what has had India on the edge of her nerves after the recent ban on “India’s Daughter”. To usher in the most celebrated celebrity in Bollywood to act as the harbinger was crowning this innocent looking chocolate cake with the choicest of cherries.
Committing what may be perceived by my fellow women enthusiasts as an act of treason, allow me to undo the overly painted picture deceiving your eyes and lay bare the blunt canvas that lies underneath. Sundry pastel hues of a woman’s choice find their place during the initial seconds of the video as the artist narrates what seems to be a vivid account of a woman’s journey through the trials and tribulations of life. However, somewhere along the road as it traverses through the myriad stereotypes clogging the channel of modernism, it swerves away from its purpose and reworks itself, redefining women empowerment as something I see as absolute anarchy. What starts to irk me initially is that, in a relationship, the narrator places the matter of choice solely in the hands of the woman and leaves no ear open to the man’s mind. No doubt, as the video aptly states- “My body. My mind. My choice”. But to be in an extramarital affair is your choice? And you see it fit to decide exclusively whether to conceive or not? So as blasphemy finds itself rooted in the middle of her argument, her brand of feminism does not find it considerate that raising a child is a decision taken between two sane adults. However, she finds it considerate enough to declare herself the saviour of men by freeing them from their caged minds.
Having untwined the mangled strings of doubt, deception and artificial pomp, the canvas now lies in all its nakedness for you to observe the myriad of possibilities that gives way to the patriarchal behavioral patterns of today. What may be considered as obscene on the narrator’s lips forms the real masterpiece on this canvas that lies hidden to the unobservant eye. Behind closed doors and plastic smiles, a world of lies rages unperturbed and in no hurry to mellow down. A manner more subtle in the passing of this message or a wee bit of consideration by the most celebrated actress in Bollywood on the lines she seemed to parrot could have, perhaps, generated alternate consequences. There is a very fine line of distinction between choice and absolute freedom leading to anarchy, but her blatant usage of the word ‘choice’ seems to think otherwise. However, the choice lies in your hands to watch the video as the choice lies in mine to form an opinion of it.