How many times do you hit the backspace, thinking that some specific words or phrases might hurt the sentiments of your readers?
How many times have you changed your wardrobe plan, just by apprehending that someone else might find it odious?
How many times have you turned round from the threshold of a “posh and elite” cafe, wondering that you are not dressed for the occasion? How many times have you muffled your laughter, or refrained yourself from giving vent to your ideas, fearing that you might shock the members of the polite society around you?
Or how many times have you pondered over the idea of “burning your bra”, and abandoned it, considering the sheer impossibility of it?
This list can go on and on and on… Where is the “I” in these supposedly popular propagandas?
How free are we? Or are we free at all? As India celebrates her 66th Independence Day(with great fanfare!), just pause, take a deep breath and reflect upon the issue of freedom, of the mind without fear and the head held high..
Those of who amongst us, are rigorously shedding calories to confirm to the so-called “perfect curves” , or feel demented by small breasts and penises may I ask you, Is it you who rule your body ?
Because the social scarecrows who aim to bring an abrupt end to physical oppression of all kinds , get their tasks done successfully everytime, that of rendering the minds crippled forever.
If you are convinced of your freedom, then I will be happy for you, do enjoy every “In-dependence” Day that comes, and our honorable PM’s much awaited speech with full throttle…Else, lets take a turn…let’s “de-hegemonise”,and help others create a “counter hegemony”. Instead of being decked up in tri-colour, lets paint “Mother India” in black. We can also fly black kites, in that case. (This does not mean that I want to deliberately offend the sentiments of the humble children of the scarlet-clad Mother India, or even those children of “free” India who do not subscribe to the idea of nation as a “mother”.)
As a common adage goes, “You can take a horse to the river, but you cannot make him drink”,
here is an earnest suggestion for you to contemplate, to cast off masks of captivity, to break free , the shackles of your creativity.
Heureuse liberté !
–Silpa Mukherjee and Rini Barman
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