"Thappad, Bas Itni Si Baat?"
Trigger warning for mention of Abuse
Taapsee Pannu starring film, Thappad, has been a major part of the Bollywood related headlines ever since the release of its first trailer. The movie highlights how a woman is expected to accept and move on with the abuse inflicted on her, whether physical or emotional, as that is how the Indian psyche works.
In today’s world, the film is very relevant, especially within the Indian society, as it highlights the sensitive view of domestic violence, its impact on the husband-wife relationship and how just one slap can totally change the perspective of today’s woman towards the relationship with her spouse.
The modern woman understands her rights and equality of status in the institution of marriage and as has it been brought out in the movie, she is unwilling to accept and tolerate male dominance in today’s society and be the recipient of domestic violence as a means for the husband to vent out his frustration.
The film’s storyline weaves a strong web that attracts the viewer to its relevance in the changing Indian social structure. The ‘joint family’ has over the years, given way to the nuclear family. The Indian woman today shoulders equal responsibilities as the husband (if not more as a working woman).
Today’s hectic lifestyle impacts the husband-wife relationship with more stresses and upheavals. The Indian woman of today is unwilling to be cowed down by the society as a submissive entity and at the very first indication of domestic violence reacts with fervor fuelled by her sense of self-respect and unwillingness to be a door-mat to the husband in the abusive relationship.
The motive, therefore, brings out the strength of today’s woman in the Indian society, who has emerged from the shadows of dominance and is determined to fight for her rights and social status, rather than accept her fate and move on, as was an erstwhile prevalent norm.
People choose to stay in or endure toxic relations rather than force the social stigma of having a broken marriage and go in for a divorce, which in the orthodox Indian society is an unacceptable word. The social pressure from friends, family and the peer group tries to force the couple to turn a blind eye towards such misdemeanor for the sake of the continuity of the relationship.
Moreover, as it happens more often, when children are also stakeholders, the couple often ignore such occurrences for their sake, in order to ensure that the family stays together, the woman has to bear the brunt of such incidents. The first catalyst starts off a chain reaction resulting in a trend in which the woman is forced to accept it as a routine norm.
At times, the woman often continues with the relationship rather than face financial hardships and the responsibility of supporting the children as a single parent.
Thappad highlights all these issues and talks about how being in an abusive relationship takes a toll on one’s mind whether or not they decide to move out of it!
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