While the video’s message of women finding self-worth through beauty can be construed as sexist (our worth can’t be reduced to mere beauty and looks), and it also has the token ‘fat’ woman that one can criticise it for, one also can’t deny that the loving and acceptance of one’s body remains a universal, daily struggle of probably every woman the world over.
Mahinder Watsa is a 92-year old gynaecologist and sexologist, famous for his Ask the Sexpert column in Mumbai Mirror for the past 10 years, and is an author of It's Normal, a book that explains human sexual anatomy, defines complex notions such as love, partnership and consent, and takes on popular myths. He has spent a lifetime dispelling sexual ignorance and is known for his wry humour and blunt answers.
Not only has evolving discourse on sexuality influenced the fate of how sex work is understood, but also with the growth of sex workers’ rights movements, discourses on sex work are now being able to influence how we think about sexuality. In our issues on Sex Work and Sexuality this month, we hope to be able to traverse some of these convergences.
"'Dhandewali's must smoke; paan is a must; a 'dhandewali' can never escape her identity; 'dhandewali's must dress ‘differently’… Spanning over 6 decades of Bollywood cinema, 'Zinda Laash' highlights how very little has changed across the ages when it comes to the industry’s representation of women in prostitution. Humorously drawing attention to stereotypes, while poignantly highlighting myths, 'Zinda Laash' is a tribute to every sex worker who is not recognised as a woman or a human being."
The gang rape and murder of New Delhi’s Jyoti Singh in December 2012 shook up the country’s urban collective conscience. Kavita Krishnan’s erudite feminist leadership emerged from the incident’s aftermath – a powerful voice of outrage against the curtailing of freedom and mobility.