The term feminism is a term which means
that there should be equal and fair opportunity for both men and women, this
was later turned into a movement which fought for an egalitarian society where
there would be no difference made between a man and a woman on any basis.In a
world where feminism has become a movement gaining popularity, hence its
relevance cannot be denied. The study will talk about, feminism in Indian
movies and how it has evolved over the time.
KEY WORDS: Feminism, egalitarian,
barriers, show business, media
can clearly be seen in the media and photographs of
those times which show a higher representation of male actors in works as
compared to female actors. This surely was not the one and only field which has
been impacted over the period of years, but it is one of the major things which
shows a mirror to the society and raises awareness in places where such a wave
has not reached. In this research we will look at how feminism has evolved in
India over the years with reference to its emergence and the future of such a movement
The history of feminism in India can be
seen starting in the beginning of the mid eighteenth century where the
colonialists helped the Indian society do away with the evils like, Sati, widow
remarriage and various other social evils. The participation of women in all
spheres was very less as compared to how it is now. Women hardly came into the
public realm and the ones who did were faced with constant criticism. Even
after the emergence of women in the field of movies began they were given
subsidiary roles to play. This disparity was something that was considered very
normal until there was awareness created about feminism and its movements. The
position women held in the Indian film industry has also evolved over the years
even though there is no major difference.The problem was not only the presence
and representation of women in the Indian movies but a whole lot of other
issues female actors have to go through to survive in the show business which
also come under the main head of feminism.
becomes important to discuss this issue since even today there
is a great disparity in the gender roles of our society we surely have come a
long way and things are way better now, but still there has not been major
transformation in the feminist movements and achievement of its objectives in
India. Women of India are still constraint by a lot of factors like societal,
cultural, political etc. specifically in the field of movies female actors have
a huge restriction on age barrier. In earlier movies they were represented as
the damsel in distress or the woman who attracts men, this typical ideology
that prevailed about woman took a great number of years to change. The movies
near the early 2000’s can be seen portraying women as a dependent being,
someone confined within the walls of her home. Women were often seen playing
the role of a mother, wife, sister or a daughter of the hero. Never was a woman
taken as the lead in a movie. This trend has seemed to have changed over the
period and there are more movies where the female actors play the lead. The
roles offered to woman has also changed over the years, earlier most
occupational roles were given to males this was also in a way a reflection of
the society of that time. The concern now would be to analyse the way forward
about how this will impact our movies and the society too.
One more interesting aspect to look at
is how female actors struggled their way in the Indian industry, how their
participation was so less and even now after so much raised awareness the pay
for male and female actors is not equal. We can see films as an evergreen path
for male actors i.e. no age limit. Male actors get to work for as long as they
can with female actors who are way below their ages, while female actors face
constant trouble since they are constantly told about the age barrier. Female
actors are made aware that media is a show business and so once female actors
grow old they do not have any work in movies. But that is not so now even
female actors who were acting have made their comeback in various movies in
various roles. The Indian society constraints women to follow a certain kind of
lifestyle which again limits them from pursuing their carriers continuously,
causing a break in their carriers. But that is another field of study altogether.
What is to be considered is that we move towards a more egalitarian society,
where everyone has equal opportunity and both male and females get equal
representation in all spheres.
The analysis will be done by making
references to few movies pre-and post the 2000’s, in the Indian Film/ Movie
industry. We will also consider the trends with reference to data and graphs. I
have referred to various books and news articles for my study to get and all-
round view from all spheres relating to this topic. The books and articles
referred are mentioned in the references. The books that I referred to was
something that helped me to understand an overview of how feminism has evolved
in the Indian movies.
Findings and arguments:
My result of my research will show how
the feminism in Indian movies had become better than it was earlier, now more
movies can be seen offering lead roles to females also. But there is a long way
to go still. This can be in reference to feminism in Indian movies as well as
their representation off sets. i.e. in the Indian film industry.
This graph shows how there is a
disparity in the roles played by male and female actors in Hindi movies this is
in reference to an article published in 2017. This is the case with Hindi film
industry similarly many other Indian movie industries have such disparities.
Even though the disparities have reduced but have there have not been major
This research was an attempt to analyse
feminism in Indian movies as of its present status. This is done by referring
to various books and sites in reference to the topic and related materials. The
research aims to study how feminism is portrayed in the Indian movie industry.
Maggie. Feminisms a Reader. Longman, Pearson Education, 2002.
Jasbir, and Sudha Rai. Films and Feminism: Essays in Indian Cinema.
Rawat Publications, 2015.
director. NDTV.com. NDTV.com, 18 Jan. 2016,