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Stereotyping women in dramas... By Sara

22 December, 2013

Most of the dramas on air portray women as weak and helpless. Not only are women continuously shown as sacrificing puppets who bear all abuse, blame and humiliation because that is expected of a good Pakistani woman brilliantly delivered through the drama Humsafar but these dramas enforce how significant religion is in determining a woman's integrity, as portrayed in the drama Umme Kulsoom. It is interesting to notice the hypocrisy in these dramas as they conveniently evade putting men through the religious lens, not even showing them practice religion whereas a woman with her head covered or head bowed on the prayer mat makes for an ideal poster for the promotion of these dramas.

Furthermore, presenting working women as the cause of marriage failures and being bad mothers is another trend in many Pakistani dramas, as happens in the case of Durr-e-Shahwar. The extremely conceited and negative character of Fareeda, an NGO worker, in Humsafar is another example of the horrible picture that propagates the negative concoctions associated with female NGO workers in our society. These dramas may or may not directly blame working women but their representations, coated with much emotion and bias, enforce stereotypes that we need to move away from.

SARA RIZVI
Karachi

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