Dangal – The Feminist’s Myth

The empowered Dangal Daughters


Let me just get it out the way that it is a good movie, a fine watch with all the elements of a good underdog sort of drama which entertains, however, a lot of people have seriously misread the cultural message of the movie. And to set that record straight is my goal here.

This YouTube video attributes the issue of women’s equality to the movie, an understandable claim — a father goes against the “gender stereotypes of the Indian society” to push his girls to compete in a realm of men. Hence the applaud from the feminist crowd. This is a confused branch of feminism or I guess the confusion of a drowning ideology which in its attempt to stay on the surface grasps at any straw it can.

Here’s a list of how both the movie and the ideologues miss the whole damn point:

  • Right from the start, we see that the father(Aamir Khan) character is hardly a beacon of feminism or gender equality — he ends up with 4 f***ing children in his attempts to have a boy. He never for a second believed that women can do anything more than what he’s seen them do their entire lives — cooking and breeding.
  • Finally, it seems a street fight the daughters get into convinces him otherwise. And we’re to take this as his eye-opening moment as to the value of women in the world? Let’s just entertain the idea still, here’s what’s next
  • Does he force the girls who had no f***ing interest in the sport, all for women’s empowerment? Simply f***ing NOT! It was only for his own goddam f***ing EGO! And this guy is the new face of feminism for the Human Rights Network?
  • And how f***ing confused is the feminism ideology itself? Is pushing young girls into X (because daddy has his own grievances in life) empowerment now? If yes then how come they all get their panties in a bunch when the next father wants his little princess to start changing diapers at 18?
  • Wouldn’t or shouldn’t real feminism be when the girls are left alone to chart their own path? Be that to the kitchen or to the moon!
  • Exposes the real facade of the ideology — most of it was never about setting women free to forge their own path, but to set them against men, to go after every position, title or realm where men have even the slightest presence. Doesn’t matter what her personal wishes and hopes are, like it simply didn’t matter to the jubilant feminists when the girls in the movie are bawling at having their hair chopped off — a small price to pay as long as it’s for the “greater good” of planting the feminist flag in just one more of those “male spaces”. Just like in the former soviet union you prepend “comrade” before calling anyone’s name, thus eroding individuality at the very core of one’s existence — the person’s very name itself. Again a small price to pay for the “greater good” of the union — the mask falls off and the entity’s bloody eyes behind begin to show, before you resist it you must name it, for it sings a sweet siren song. Listen.
  • If you resist it, you will learn that all the girls in all the villages of every third world country can be beaten and dragged into winning another gold medal to prove a point, but it only means something when their individual souls wished for it.
  • If you listen and fell into its spell, then be I must bid goodbye to your society, hoping you will never become a place where “children have to die to save their mothers“.

There was yet a final lesson in the movie though. The true God who punishes those who side with irrationality, but immediately rewards the one who sees the folly in his own methods and changes course.

Halfway around when the father wants the girls to play against the real boys in an actual wrestling match, the ticket collector flat out refuses. The brute father threatens violence — the only language he speaketh but is still turned away. Suddenly though the ticketing guy’s partner lights a spark of reason in this darkness and advises the idiot bout all the profits to be made by overcoming his medieval notions of what women can and should not do. Reason wins — the ticketing guy makes a killing, the audience gets one of a kind spectacle at just 2 bucks/ticket, the girls get a chance to show their new talents and even (the least deserving) brute’s ego gets his way.

That’s an outcome better than winning stupid gold medals in made up global competitions, the light of individualism and free-market capitalism shines bright in that moment. Sadly those blinded by the cult of death do not see it.

One can only ask of them rage, rage against the dying of the light.

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