Forum Posts

24020033
Dec 15, 2021
In Welcome to the Forum
When I say the word fangirl, what words come to mind? Fan girls are notoriously known as crazy, obsessive, shallow, annoying, or deluded. But this begs the question: Why are girls constantly belittled and degraded by society for simply enjoying and being passionate about their interests? Why does it bother so many people when a young teenager waits hours in line to see her favorite band? Or when she purchases posters and merch in support for her favorite book series? The answer is simple: it’s because they are women. I’ve been called a fangirl before and strangely felt the need to defend myself from this term. I have wanted to justify that I really do care about the music and not just about the attractiveness of the artist or character. Because that’s all a young girl can care about, right? When I attempted to dissect why male music fans are not challenged by the same prejudices attached to female fans, I knew this was part of a bigger issue. Sexism and misogynistic double standards are driving the narrative around fangirls. When football fans spend money on front row tickets, wear t-shirts to support their favorite team, or react emotionally to wins or losses, they are not shamed the same way women are. I’ve seen grown men crying and throwing things at their television screen after the sports match did not go their way, yet we are the crazy obsessive ones, right? This is part of the same narrative that labels women as too emotional, sensitive, and irrational, thus not worthy of being taken seriously about their interests. When Harry Styles was asked about his fanbase being primarily young teenage girls, he rightly stated, "We're so past that dumb outdated narrative of 'Oh, these people are girls, so they don't know what they're talking about'. They're the ones who know what they're talking about. They're the people who listen obsessively. They fucking own this shit. They're running it." So, think twice the next time you use being young and female as an insult. Because it’s not.
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24020033
Dec 15, 2021
In Welcome to the Forum
A childhood favorite, having watched the movie several times with my family, it felt fascinating and strangely rewarding to revisit and analyze it through a different lens. The film centers around the lives of three friends attending one of the top engineering universities in the country, yet only one is passionate about his chosen career path. It serves as a social commentary and critique on the current educational system in India while still being funny and heartfelt. The film explores the impact and effectiveness of the teaching methodology in shaping the learning climate in educational institutes. While the purpose of education may be to create more aware, well-developed, and passionate students by transferring skills and knowledge to them, the movie shows how this purpose has been completely lost and toppled. This purpose has been degraded and reduced to nothing more than mere grades or positions. The film also focuses on the role of capitalism on the social implications of grades, degrees, and universities. People tend to pick majors based on their value to the job market instead of pursuing their passion. As a result, these institutions produce brainwashed commodities, slaves to the corporate world. The film also touches upon the capacity of educational pressures to impact mental health by showing students struggling with academic and familial pressures. India has one of the highest rates of suicide amongst students, and that is no coincidence. The quantification of success and chronic lack of sympathy within educational institutions is dehumanizing and detrimental for society. Thus, “3 idiots” serves as a brutal reminder for us to do better. I recommend you watch this film again and look for these themes.
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24020033
Dec 15, 2021
In Welcome to the Forum
I recently came across the short film “Ab Buss,” directed by Mohsin Talat, and was enthralled by the powerful message it delivers and felt the need to share it with others. It is about the intense fear, panic, and anxiety a young woman feels when faced with the challenge of traveling alone at night. Based on the Lahore Motorway gang rape case, the thriller strategically addresses the topics of sexual assault, rape, and the prevailing victim-blaming narrative regarding the incident. This film is heartbreaking to watch as it accurately encapsulates the extreme measures women have to take to feel safe and protected in this country. It infuriates me that despite taking extreme precautionary actions to protect oneself, the system still finds a way to blame the victim and reduce this more significant issue to what the woman was wearing or how provocatively she was acting. In the film, the lead character, played by Sanam Saaed, arms herself with a taser and a gun while wearing military clothing to disguise herself and avert attention. This act made me realise how bound we are as women in our shared anxiety, alertness, and reluctancy to ever let our guard down. Unfortunately, this is the sad and harsh reality that women find themselves in this country, and it is time for a change. Ab buss.
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