Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Goongy Gudiya and Ibsen

After the demise of Pt. Nehru, when Indira Gandhi took over the Congress Party; she was nick-named Goongy Gudiya (a dumb doll) by the party veterans; who thought that she would be just a puppet in their hands. It is a different story that the ensuing events proved their predictions miserably incorrect; but the analogy of Gudiya meaning a doll in Hindi was quite apt.

Few years ago, I happened to read a translated version of Ibsen's ground-breaking play called 'A doll's house' (written some 125 years ago). The protagonist, Nora, leaves her husband who treats her like a doll rather than a person with emotions and begins her quest for her true self.

If you are following the recent news of sad demise of Gudiya; you will get the connection. Much has been written about state of women in India, the panchayat (village counsel) system of justice and lately the media hype surrounding the whole incident; so it will be mere repetition if I write more about that here. However, couple of points are worth pondering. First of all, you can clearly see the print media denouncing the electronic media for cheap journalism. Though the allegations are substantially correct; to me the apparent divide between the two and the effort to try claiming the high ground appears as a form of survival attempt. The other thing is all media provides fodder to any minor controversy/small event, makes every attempt to make an Everest out of mole-hill and in the end blames the outcome such as in this case on the hype without the slightest hint of acknowledging the apparent hypocrisy.

2 comments:

Sudhu said...

Couldnt agree with you more on the Gudiya issue being blown out of proportions. I didnt notice that subtle divide between print media and television media, it does seem very ironic. It was although unfortunate that the kid & the mother both didnt survive.
But didnt get the connection with Indira Gandhi. I'd rather say (or believe) that Sonia Gandhi is more of a Goongy Gudiya.

Nandan said...

No, the connection was just how Gudiya/Doll represents helpless puppet.