Saturday, March 14, 2015

The logic of a sexist mind set

"Chittiya KalaiyaVe" goes the song. Listen to it. It means, "Girl with white wrists!, I'm a girl with white wrists. Take me shopping. I request you. I'm the girl with white wrists" For all the sexist and racist undertones, it;'s catchy.

It's sexist at many levels. Yes, there are women in villages and town, who depend on men to take them out shopping. They do sing such tunes in real life. Take me shopping.Get me a pink scarf. But these girls in designer wear!!!!
The sad part is that Jackie, the lead mouth piece here is not just educated and smart, but from a politically powerful, wealthy family of a neighbouring nation. She is modern, confident and winner of a beauty pageant and ambitious enough to travel thousands of miles northwards into an alien land and act in films in a foreign language.
Not just she, every woman in that video is bright, ambitious and gutsy. Most of them probably support huge families of unemployed dads, brothers, husbands and sons. Yet, for them to make their bread and butter, they should chant and gyrate to, "Take me shopping, I'm the girl with white writs."Watch the song. It's fun in its own way.

A Dog's Logic

In this man made den of ours, Zelda's instincts lead her to do strange things.She digs on the bed, piles up the sheets, pretends she has softened the hard ground and plops onto it.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Logic of lost last names

Most people of Tamilnadu do not have a second name. How did this happen? In a bid to get rid of caste identities, the leaders of the state encouraged people to shed their second names, as second names in India show what caste one belongs to. So how do we fill passport forms and other documents that ask for  a second name?
Like Malcolm X we use the initial letter of our parents' names. But we attach it to the beginning of our names. It is called our initial. For instance, I was D. Rajalakshmi, as my Dad's first and only name was Desikan.Some people use only the initial. Some people expand the initial to their father's name, while filling up forms, which means that to a westerner, it looks like your father's name is your first name.
While people create facebook accounts, they are reluctant to mention their initials. So they break their names into two parts.Since old timers like me have long names anyway, its easy. I call myself Raja Lakshmi. And those who have short names just use their names twice. (Varun Varun/ Latha Latha) and so on. When I travel to other states, I realize that although we Tamils feel awkward about having initials an single names, it was a pretty good idea to get rid of caste based surnames.