August 21, 2008

It’s an epidemic I tell you. A vicious cycle of humiliation and crushed self esteems doubly enhanced here in South Asia because marriage is more of a barter system and girls are constantly judged by prospective inlaws as too fat, too ugly, too DARK. Women who’ve been placed on pedestals when they were younger then go on to inflict the same viciousness on the next generation. It’s not pretty.

Heck even the prettiness is an issue I can understand but the colour issue. Kind of makes one feel pukish. It’s almost like we’re trying to camouflage our own identity behind a spotless, foreign façade. It’s humiliating. But I can’t even blame the women who get sucked into this mindset. It’s true their fairer counterpart WILL be more prominent and considered more prettier almost unconsciously.

My own travelling stint in India comprised of a few funny moments of being taken as a non-desi and after clearing up the confusion, being complimented over how pretty and fair Pakistani girls were.. Not that in Pakistan there isn’t any “Dark and Ugly” issues but this was first time anyone made me notice this issue. It made me realize how much, I too, was affected by this mindset. Everywhere I go I’m equally judged and if for the colour of my skin then rather unfairly.  People who say I’m on the right side of fair need to know how irrelevant this issue is to me. It’s almost scary how people are so horrified if I declare I’m proud to be brown and Asian. An immediate response is “but you’re not brown at all”. Yes, thanks but no thanks… I’m never going to see that as a compliment. This was simply a result of how my ancestors bred.. nothing more.. nothing less

Such divorce from ones being is going to corrode us whole from the inside. Women really need start to accept themselves and accept the beauty of their diversity otherwise they’ll be nothing more than generic, painted over, featureless, dolls set out for display. We need to take a stand against this issue and spread the positive vibes everywhere.

Until then enjoy this advertisement.

On a ironic note I was watching a documentry on the Indian Mughals and their first contact with the white man. The Mughals found them quite distateful to look at because they were reminded of dead people.


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