Friday, January 16, 2009

We Indians...

Exhibit 1
Slumdog Millionaire wins a few Golden Globe awards. This includes A.R.Rehman for the soundtrack of the film (which is great, no doubt about it). Slumdog Millionaire is a film made by a British director although it is based in India. A good story and a well-made film. But it still is essentially is a British film. But just look at the speed at which it has been adopted by us Indians, as if this was our own film. Some people have gone overboard in praising it while there are others who have been outraged by the depiction of India as country of slums and poverty (well, thats not entirely untrue). But both sides do have one thing in common. They are taking pride in India. The first set of people are proud that India has been noticed on the world stage. Indian actors and music is being appreciated by the world. While the other set is outraged that only negatives are being depicted.

Exhibit 2
Matthew Hayden announces retirement. ICC ratings show that he is amongst the ten greatest batsmen of all time. But Indians are outraged. Our legend (sorry, GOD) Sachin is not even in the Top-25. Media starts carpet-bombing (cant think of any other word to describe how our media "breaks" news) the news. Renowned experts come in and start barking for all their worth that this is a travesty of the mightiest proportions. A rating system without Sachin as the top batsmen is not worth even looking at. But then media does tend to misguide. Firstly the current ratings system has been in place for quite some time now. And the ratings depicted are the peak that any player might have achieved at any point in his career. The peak can be simply due to an outstanding run over a small period of time but not necessarily over the entire career. But nobody bothered going into such detail. Only one point was clear. Our GOD has been insulted. And our collective pride had been deeply hurt.

The above examples may seem unconnected. But they have a lot in common. Both show the sense of pride that is embedded in our collective conscience with regards to our country. The collective pride we take in even trivial achievements (e.g. Somdev Devvarman's reaching Chennai Open finals) shows that whatever our faults we still feel Indian. And any slight to our heroes is like a personal insult to us. Whatever our other faults (and there are many), WE INDIANS do have a sense of collective pride.

P.S. After reading Robin's comment to this post, got down to some thinking. Well, I am not too sure about the common people but our media (specially the news channels) does suffer from collective hysteria and sensationalization.

1 comment:

Robin said...

Collective Pride is when that pride is embedded in the hearts of each and every Indian... I don't think most of the Indians cared about Slumdog Millionaire or the fact that Sachin was not there in ICC List... [Though I am still glad that A R Rahmann won the Golden Globe.. That is more because i grew up with his music]. Only the News Channels Care about this and not the common man on the streets..