Sportswoman Vs The Woman: How Bollywood Fails Both

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sportswomen in bollywood
2 min read

This national sports day, we’re looking at the gendered manner in which Bollywood portrays women in sports. Scroll on to watch the video!

If you’re a 90’s desi kid who grew up on a healthy appetite of Bollywood, I’m sure you vaguely remember the film ‘Dil Bole Hadippa’.  

The film is about a person whose only ambition in life is to make it big as a cricketer. The only problem? She’s a woman. And women don’t play cricket. As she’s been told on countless occasions throughout the film. So her solution: she dresses up as a man to get in with one of the biggest cricket teams in the country. And that’s how she’s able to fulfil her ambitions.

And that in a nutshell, is the main conflict, the conflict resolution and the general plot of every other mainstream film with a sportswoman as its protagonist. 

The Gendered Portrayal Of Women In Sports In Bollywood

Pick up any mainstream Bollywood sports biopic with a sportswoman as a protagonist and you’ll notice how the cultural conditioning and imposition that bog her down are such a significant part of the plot.

The manner in which she’s expected to look after the home, nurture her children, be the perfect caregiver while constantly prove that she’s capable of playing the sport too. A male sportsperson’s struggle to balance home and sports is somehow never made out to be an issue.

So watch the video above as we explore the good, the bad and everything in between about Bollywood’s representation of sportswomen!

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Having an honours' degree in Liberal Arts, and currently pursuing her Masters' from Sarah Lawrence College, NY; Kritiksha Sharma is a part-time Theatre Actor and a full time procrastinator. She likes to believe that she has some crazy organisational skills but the hundreds of unopened messages and mails on her phone have another story to tell. A big time pop culture enthusiast, she finds nothing more comforting than going to bed while watching a rom-com and snuggling with her laptop as she dreams of things to write about.

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