a terrible painter, a dreamer, a rebel , a feminist and a self certified bisexual Witch. Who is always trying to visualize whats on the other side of the canvas she paints,just another human- Living alive Life. Now also a green tea addict.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Really all for Thy Name?

(Was written on 8th March 2014, but due to internet problem I am publishing it today. So I won't change the unrefined mood in this piece of writing its the first hand chronicle of my feelings. Warning may sound repetitive and boring to few so don't scroll down {Yes Elder Sister Its meant for you, so don't read} )

I who had refrained from having any emotional attachment with my Pink College was dragged to college today by my walking mate. In this hateful relationship with my college I had taken the side of ignorance and remained in home, so after one month of abandoning my college life and zero attendance I was forced to attend my classes since last Wednesday. Today for first time in history of our college, Pink College had done something exceptional and has earned my rare appriciation.  On the occasion of International Women’s Day, our college celebrated this so called special day by screening an American-Persian collaborated Film The Stoning of Soraya M. based on the French novel La Femme Lapidée.

So after attending one class my major mates and I we all rushed to the renovated Auditorium, to find it filled with hues of pink. So we grabbed our seats and I off course took a seat which helped my short height to see from a distance. Half of the auditorium was filled with girls of college which secretly made me happy that girls were willing to watch something related her own gender.  The film was being screened by a guest professor from Gujarat who had lectured us on Indian Literature the previous day. Soon our projector was being focused on the white screen that somehow hanged above the dais.  We thanked that the screen was clean one without stains of tea like previous day. Soon all the doors were closed and lights shut and we reclined to our seats. As soon as the projector began exposing the film we found our White Screen was covered with infinite spots of bright light like a night sky without moon. The silent room again broke in to giggles and whispers. At last after some difficulties the infinite spots were somehow diluted to an extent and our film began to roll and chattering died down.

The film opens on the angry, frustrated and hopeless face of our Protagonist Soraya’s aunt Zahra. Zahra tries to shoo away the dogs who are trying to eat flesh of what appears to have been a body. She washes the bones and digs out the earth buries what is left of the body. She approaches a journalist whose car has broken down and throws a bone wrapped in paper with direction to her home. The journalist then visits her to record the story of Zahra’s niece Soraya. The story tells us about Ali the corrupt prison guard who he is talking to Mullah of the town and blackmailing him to force Soraya to divorce him. Ali wants to marry the fourteen year old daughter of a prisoner in lieu of saving him from execution. We find the Mullah trying to convince Sorya into becoming his temporary wife and offers her various compromising suggestions to raise her two girls alone. Soon a woman dies and the Mayor, Mullah and Ali suggest Soraya works for the widower Hashem. Zahra tells Soraya will only work if she is paid. Meanwhile Ali’s frustration to marry the teen drives him crazy and he finds Soraya unconsciously touching the Widower’s hand while giving him the sewing machine back. This sprouts a plan in which Ali defames Soraya of committing adultery and gossip-mongers help to spread humours.  Ali eventually blackmails Hashem to say that Soraya slept with him and Ali drags and publicly abuses Soraya. Soraya is asked to prove her innocence but she tells how she could, the mayor tells if a wife accuses her husband of adultery she must prove his guilt and if a wife is accused of adultery she must prove her innocence. Soon a trail takes place and she is declared a sinner and Zahra tries to run away with her but the rebel police shut them in. Soon Soraya’s two sons visit her and the elder shows disgust towards her. She is taken to Public Square and half buried. Zahra tries to save her, when Soraya’s father  fails to hit her with stone fellow village woman yells she is innocent but Ali hits her and it is followed by the mullah and her sons her forced too. When the widower is given stones he runs away in guilt. Eventually she is covered in blood and dies people leave her, she is covered by the travelling carnival, who later burry her near the river. Ali fails to marry the teen girl as her father is executed and Hashem confesses to the mayor that he was forced to lie. The journalist is raided by the mullah and mayor and rebel police. His tape is destroyed, he leaves them and at the end of the city Zahra hands him the tape and stops the Mullah, Mayor saying everyone one will learn her niece’s story.

The movie left us spell bound, despite a horrible screen my eyes were glued to it. The essential question it raises is what role religion plays in people’s life. In name of Islam women around the world are stoned to death, executed publicly all in name of God’s justice. The most striking scenes in the film were when Soraya breaks the glasses in frustration, then when she wonders in the fields with her little girls, but the most epic scene was when Soraya is standing in the execution ground and asking how could people who knew her did this to her. The most pathetic and horrifying scenes will be the young boys collecting stones without knowing the meaning of adultery and the stoning scenes shivers ones soul. It chokes one inside and twists one’s thoughts on brutality. Even if a person commits adultery is it justified to stone them to death? The movie not only explores the position of women but the condition of god fearing good men like Hashem  who are exploited by the sellers of god. Ali and Mullah present the very corrupt face of religion. Soraya’s death is not death of a woman in man’s world but it is the death of purity of religion in hands of beasts. But Soraya is not the victim at men’s hand, she is equally victimised by her own gender which the character of Leila proves. Leila gossips in the town and cheers when Soraya is hit with the stone. This film also raises a question are women willing to help each other? The film explores the multilayer complexities of a woman, a woman with two daughters, a woman and her demonised role in front of religion.

The film makes me suggest to my reader friends to read and watch Kite Runner and read A Thousand Splendid Suns. We find the same fates in this two novels of  Khaled Hosseini. Now I want to read this French Novel too.  

Sadly when film got over I turned around to find the auditorium nearly empty. I was so engrossed in the film that I failed to see people leaving. In the end it was just my major mates and me and two or three boys sitting. The guest lecturer told us that its men’s duty to protect and respect the better half as everything comes from her. But so much for women’s day the fairer sex were missing from the auditorium and her own cause didn't anchor her to the seats.

P.S- Seriously do we really need a women’s day if the women are blind to her own cause? Or do we need self awareness day instead?  

thanking you to bear with me

1 comment:

  1. Saumitra Chakraborty17 March 2014 at 22:55

    One of the best articles written on the topic.
    Very correct.