Friday, February 10, 2017

To be or not be

Karan Johar has famously declared in his autobiography that he doesn't understand the social repercussions of the way he portrays the characters in his movie and also that he is least bothered about it. All he claims is that he knows to make fun movies.

Let me zoom in a bit and come to my small world of friends and families. Few believe that making innocent sexually violent comments about the opposite sex, preserving interests on one's own caste and deriding people's looks are all personal choices with no far bearing consequences on the larger society.

Come to think of it again!

Are our actions so isolated and limited to our personal space? Are personal and public lives really that tangential? If they ever meet what is the dynamics of that tumultuous space? Do humans exercise any control over the forces in that realm?  When does the personal become political and where does political impact our personal choices? Can we be naive and behave in a way so as to implicate absolute disconnectedness to the larger game of life?

Can I watch sexually violent teenage porn and fight for child rights?

Will I not add to the communal riots by not inviting my other religion friend to dinner at house?

Should I call myself a feminist if I enjoy making and laughing at sexist jokes?

Would it impact the nature if I decorate my house with only plastic stuff?

K P Poornachandra Tejaswi is a renowned Kannada author whom I like specifically for bringing in the social angle to his stories. Seemingly innocent and isolated incidents are shown to create a wave of social sensitivity and one cannot be awed by how effortlessly he shows these connections in his writing. If you have ever wondered about the implications of your actions in your private space on the workings of the public sphere then reading Tejaswi's "Chidambara Rahasya" book is a good start at gaining clarity.