2022 Abstracts Stage 3

Celebrity Power in a movie saturated culture with respect to objectification of women in society

Hina Malik, 2022, Stage 3

This project focuses on Celebrity power with respect to the sexual objectification of women in the fraternity of Bollywood. Using the likes of John Rawls, Rae Langton, Martha Nussbaum and Catherine Mackinnon, the project goes into an in depth analysis of the kinds of objectification women are subjected to both within movies as well as in the culture that surrounds the social institution of the Hindi film industry. The project finds many problematic instances of the portrayal of women as tools and commodities, victim to oppression with the power majorly in the hands of Men when it comes to male vs female gender dynamics in society. Langton and Nussbaum demonstrate various forms of objectification and assert that the problem is severely ingrained in culture. MacKinnon shows that the issue is with regards to Power where the state perceives women through the viewpoint of Men and discusses the idea of the projection of ones own desires onto women. Lastly, the project uses Rawls theory of Justice, more specifically, his theory of fair and equal opportunity and applies it to the concept of celebrity power and gender dynamics in Bollywood. The findings show that Bollywood has for centuries been a breeding ground for sexism and misogyny, which its movies have normalised greatly over the decades and contributes majorly (though not solely) to South Asian culture being highly plagued with the degradation and oppression of women.

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