We live in a society, where more often than not, women are shamed and blamed for domestic abuse. We blame women for being beaten; We blame them for instigating their husbands! While we put all the blame on women, we free men of any guilt or shame for abusing their wives. And, why wouldn’t we? After all, we are part of a son-obsessed society that suffers from Raja Beta Syndrome.
In recent times, one movie that captured this ugly reality of domestic abuse in the most powerful way is Taapsee Pannu-starrer Thappad. This movie serves as a perfect response to patriarchy. While the whole movie is a must-watch, there is one powerful scene that captures the internalized patriarchy in the most honest way possible!
The scene captures the conversation between two men – Amrita’s father Sachin Sandhu and his son-in-law Vikram.
As a father, Sachin Sandhu was undoubtedly angry when Vikram ill-treats his daughter. But, when Vikram attempts to reconcile with a reluctant Amrita, Sachin Sandhu without threatening or shouting at Vikram, forces him to introspect without any pressure.
His powerful question makes a very valid point about what many men fail to understand: Hitting their wives shouldn’t even be a possibility.
How this powerful scene showers light on the internalized patriarchy and misogyny is quite brilliant. This powerful scene puts the blame where it’s supposed to be i.e. on the perpetrators.
Because it is not just about raising independent women. It’s also about raising men who don’t carry the unfair sense of entitlement!
But, this isn’t just the only man-to-man conversation that touched our hearts. Even the conversation between Vikram and his boss does the very same thing: It holds a mirror to Vikram’s toxic masculinity with a simple question – if Vikram could not think of hitting his boss, then why was he able to do so to his wife? While Vikram’s boss got an apology, Amruta became the target of the blame and shame!
These scenes may appear simple, but they are extremely special for two reasons. One, they speak about how many Indian men have internalized the toxic masculinity and patriarchy that they feel okay to hit their wives. Second, it gives you a ray of hope that there are men who are as feminist as you and us. Vikram’s boss and Amruta’s father make us believe that we can’t fight the battle against patriarchy alone. We need these feminist men to fight along with us and make this world more equal and fair.