Monday, September 12, 2011

From cow-worship to satellite communications ranges the progress made by Indians.

Hay yougaiz! Remember once upon a time like about a week ago everyone kept talking about something called AnnaHazareIssue? Remember that? Since we’re not talking about that anymore, does it mean we won? Please answer me yes or no. Anywaiz, this blog post title is stolen from The Illustrated Weekly of India Annual 1973- The New Landscape of India. It is from the essay on Gujarat and these illustrious words can be found nestled beneath a black and white picture of a very large satellite dish and in front of said satellite dish there are cows tooling about and doing cowish things that cows are wont to do. So in that way, the line makes sense.

I recently read The Illustrated Weekly of India Annual 1973- The New Landscape of India although maybe ‘read’ is too strong a word. I glanced through it but not really also. Sometimes I smelled it and wondered why some old magazines have that somewhat kind of smell because basically I have poor reading skills. Anyway, I think the aim of this issue was to feature essays on how all the Indian states and union territories were awesome in 1973. Independence had been won, the Green Revolution was bringing on hybrid seeds and insecticides, life expectancy was up, literacy was up, the snail was on the thorn, morning was at seven and we were just the dopest flyest OG pimp hustler gangster player hardcore motherfucking third world country in the world yougaiz. Here are some things I thought were neat about The Illustrated Weekly of India Annual 1973- The New Landscape of India.

1. The civics section of one of my school text books taught me that one of the reasons for population explosion in India is ‘the fatalistic outlook of the common man.’ Basically Common Man is going around saying hay yougaiz India is depressing and we’re all going to die, let’s go make baybeez. Similarly, this magazine taught me the following

-          “Naga women have the reputation of being excellent housewives. They are hard-working, smart and faithful to their men”. Luckily that first sentence is there because if you read the second sentence on its own, you’d think you were reading about some exciting breed of domestic animal they have in the Nagaland. Also, isn’t it neat how back then, peeps probably had no idea where Nagaland was because that was 1973  but now in 2011, peeps are like, Nagaland is like ManipurMizoramTripura types place, right? Somewhere over there, no? #progress

-          “Mizo girls who only a few decades ago sent their young men on head-hunting sprees are now modernized and sing soulful love songs to the tune of the modern guitar.” So many amazing things happening in this sentence that I feel it needs to be on a really big t-shirt with flashing lights so that people can read it in the dark and from very far away also.

-          “Kashmir is renowned for the beauty of its women and the skill of its artisans”. Later we are informed that’ the greatest ornament of a Kashmiri woman is her modesty’. So basically you just need to mix the Nagaland womans with the Kashmir womans to create ultimate Indian wife, no? #nationalintegration

For some reason, none of the writers felt the need to make such fabulously sweeping statements about the various dudes in the various states. Why such blatant sexism in 1973? Is modesty not the greatest ornament of a Kashmiri man too? Or do Kashmiri men not wear ornaments because that would be gay? Are the Mizo men not modernized and singing soulful love songs? After all, they don’t need to go out headhunting anymore, no? What they are doing in this spare time now? Why has no one said ‘Naga men have the reputation of being all-round excellent dudes.’? Is all this the early ruinous effect of naansensefeminism in modern India? I think so yes it is.

2. Another thing that my school text books told me was that we are all Indian caste. We are casteless but we are Indian. Indian is my caste. Or something. Anywaiz, this magazine also propagated against the caste and region-based ebils by perpetuating caste and region-based stereotyping in the following manner

“The Kammas, compared with the Reddis, are known to be urbane, astute and sophisticated.”

If I was a Reddi I think I might be thinking about whether I should be thinking about whether I should get offended by that or not but I'm not a Reddi so it doesn't matter. Anyway, this following one is my personal favorite

“Self-pity comes as naturally to the Andhra as self-praise does to the Tamilian.”

My Tamilian self would now like to say that I am awesome. Zomg, I just self-praised myself. Self-praising Tamils is like SO TRUE YOUGAIZ!!!11 See? Stereotypes really ARE real!!11

3. Let us now desist with the unfair practice of cherry-picking lines from the magazine, mainly because there are too many of them. Now let’s look at the pictures. We have already spoken about the large satellite dish juxtaposed with tooling cows. Other interesting pics included the strikingly dramatic black and white pics of the authors and the alarming number of pics of topless young women accompanied by descriptors that said things like ‘beautiful and bold naked tribal girl being beautiful and bold and naked’. In stark contrast, there were no pics of topless young tribal men, possibly because they are not as beautiful, bold and naked as the tribal girls. I feel like the fact that all the essays seemed to be written by men was neatly balanced by this profusion of pics of young women and their boobies. In this way, the magazine accommodated men and women in the different capacities that they are most proficient in. Because men and women are different yougaiz and they are good at different things, as is wonderfully expressed in this following ad that was also found in this magazine.

This ad has a foreigner (or an Indian who looks very foreign), foreign language spoken by white people, kamasutra pic and a really funny joke. No really, it's funny. Really. This makes it a relevant banking ad because there is a difference between a bank and a bank yougaiz. We can see this is successful ad because I have gone to the trouble of taking a pic of it and posting it on my blog. But that is not my favorite ad. This one is. 

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that ‘figure developer’, really means ‘this will make your boobies big yougaiz.’ When I first saw this, I thought it was for ladies personality development course because you can see that in the ‘before’ pics, the ladies are sad and wearing sleeveless. In the ‘after’ pics they are smiling even though they have somehow lost their sleeveless and are only wearing bra. So maybe that is personality development in a way yougaiz. Again, doesn’t seem to cater to the men but that’s probs because manboobs are gross yougaiz.

Wow, so much man/woman whining in this blog post, no? I must be on my period or something! Anyway I want to end this by saying that it is very unfair to snark about a 1973 magazine in 2011, especially when I didn’t really read it in the first place. But I feel like in order to understand where we are and where we are going, we need to understand where we were and the best way to do that is to read magazines from 1973 and make fun of them. Also it is important to remember that we are now in 2011 and we are awesome because we have internet and there are many Indians living in America. This means we no longer stereotype or make sweeping statements about people with uteruses and people from different regions, different castes and different stratas of society. We don’t even do it in ads anymore, as is clearly illustrated in this ad from TataDocomo about the thieving maidservant . Because maids really do steal everything yougaiz! I even wrote an echapbook all about it! I also wrote a book which has pics of insects but no topless tribal women because that’s against Indian culture.


ps- Didn't You Kill My Brother by Alexei Sayle. This is one of the best things I have ever seen in my life yougaiz.


pi-pu-xi-xu said...

Also, erm, yougaiz, first unhappy sleeveless woman also has only a stub for an arm, a la Thakur from Sholay. Feminique helps restore limbs as well? We shoulda told Thakur!

Sarpvinash said...

Did it also have an ad for courteous drivers who want your dead or disabled animals? I bet not.

MarryMe said...

O mai Indian gawds! Of corse Kashmiri men sing soulfool songs, yougaiz. Remember this? So 1973 man.

Anonymous said...

I feel like if I were to be employed by the Bank of India I honestly wouldn't know if I was working for a bank or a bank. Would that go against me during my annual appraisal? Or would it not make any le difference? I also feel if I'd been the copywriter who wrote the copy for that ad, I'd be award-winning and that would be the last ad I ever wrote. In any case le difference between the mens and the womens is the same as le difference between le bank et le bank. Ok enough now. I'm bored. If you come across any headhunting naga women, would you pliss send them my way? I require such help from time to time. Thanks in advance and season's greetings.

Amritha said...

I was LOLOLOLing over all of above sweepingly stereotypical statements, but it is also very very sad also to see. Especially the black and white pics. But I found this nice video that also made me LOL and wanted to share with you. Maybe you've watched it already:

Also I finished your insects book one time. Second time reading is also going on, that also will be completed again soonly. When is other books and all coming? Your language very contagious, I can't able to stop only.

longblackveil said...

I thank you for smelling the 1973 landscapes of India in the manner you did. Also, *please*, K, ornament-wearing modest Kashmiri man is gay-max and totally against Kashmiri horticulture. But I am glad it (Kashmir) was mentioned anywaiz.
Manboobs are the worst boobs. I think everyone is agreed on that, unless someone is married to a man with manboobs. Ugh. What am I saying? KTHXBAI.

Amritha said...

Ohai!! Sorry for second message, but I googled you (again) and found you on Wikipedia!!1111 very very exciting news, I say!! Now you are world famous!!!111 (tears of joy)

kaivalyam said...

Oh! How I wish I could write like yougaiz Tamizhs, me poor not-very-capable Andhra gurrl!

Anonymous said...

I would have be able to laugh at with a happier heart if I was not recently asked, on a train, in 2011, why South Indians smell funny, is it some hair oil they use?

Anonymous said...

You think I can buy this Kashmiri modesty ornament on the internetz?

Gods and Little Fishes said...

I always knew it was my dark and dirty Tamil side that was compelling me to praise myself. I am awesome.

V. Mia said...

Thank you Kuzhali Manickavel for letting me know why I am torn with self-pity. It is because I am coming from Vizag.

kuzhali manickavel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kuzhali manickavel said...

@pi-pu-xi-xu- this is true yougaiz. feminique may take your sleeveless but it will also give you arms which will go very nicely with your bra and smile.

@Sarpvinash- wow. also no there was no samesuch ad but maybe it came in 1972 Annual. Also, wow.

@MarryMe- aw, that is nice song. Also we have similarbutnotreallysimiliar number in the Tamil with great hero MGR called Kashmir Beautiful Kashmir Kashmir wonderful Kashmir. I tried to find it on youtube and could not tho I did discover that ‘kashmirbabeboob’ seems to be a popular porn search term.

@Anonymous- I think if you just remember that it is not so much la difference but vive la difference then you can succeed in any banking job. Also the Nagaland women are not the headhunting ones, they are the excellent housewives who are faithful to their men. Vive la difference and season's greetings to you also, please convey my pranams to all.

@Amritha- yes it is little sad especially when you consider that this is 2011 and we are supposed to be IndiaShining and stuff. Also that video is very lolz and some of the comments are even more lolz. Also thangs for reading my book ya- other books and all should happen at some point hopefully :)

@ longblackveil- hai dear :) Did you know it took two mans to write about Kashmir? Really it did yougaiz. also I think the rule is that manboobs are gross unless they are on a woman. Then they are ok.

@Amritha- hai again dear :) it is exciting, no? i am excited about that yougaiz.

@ kaivalyam- hai dear :) I would offer you some words of encouragement or something but as a self-praising Tamil (or half a Tamil), I can only say I am awesome. Kinda.

@ Anonymous- as far as I know, South Indians as a people smell using their nose, which is the recommended mode of smelling as far as I know. Haven’t met any south Indians that use hair oil for smelling although if they did, I agree, that would be funny.

@ Anonymous1- I think the Kashmiri modesty ornament only works on women, if you’re a dude it might make you gay. this doesn't answer your question at all.

@ Gods and Little Fishes- hai! What a nice handle you have I say! I am also awesome kinda but that’s because I am Tamil kinda.

@ V. Mia- basically if you are coming from vizag and are native of that area means naturally you will feel self pity because you are an Andhra. If you were coming from Chennai, things would have been very different for you

Anonymous said...

Fun read K. Especially since I am a male chauvinist ;)

Anonymous said...

Dunno about thatpugazhchi, but I feel exaggeration and hyperbole is the trait that defines us, no? Like, if a kurunila mannan rules about 3 villages, he automatically becomes the ruler of aal three worlds under one umbrella! I used to feel that this this kudai must be larger than my grandpa's when I was young. Kuzhali, on another note, can't you like start a satyagraha against the term Tamilian? It sounds sorta like 'reptilian' !! I prefer Tamil actually. P.S. I am a Tamil/Tamizh.

kuzhali manickavel said...

@ anonymous1- thanks for reading :) i too am male chauvinist also because dudes are haut

@ anonymous2- i dunno, i have heard that exaggeration and hyperbole apparently defines the irish, the italian, the spanish and pretty much anyone with 'hot, latin blood'. maybe this means all these peoples are actually tamilzhs #weglobal #NRIwinning

Madhuri Maram/iruhdam said...

A question: what were you doing with a 1973 weekly?

MarryMe said...

Wanna be my Chhammak Chhalo?

kuzhali manickavel said...

@Madhuri Maram/iruhdam- hai :) i have no idea what i was doing with 1973 weekly. hence, i wrote blog post.

@MarryMe- you will be my jalebi bai? i cant believe i just wrote that on the internet

meena said...

ha ha ha.. you are really good:))

kuzhali manickavel said...

thanks for reading :)


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