By Anshul Tewari:
As 2014 comes to an end, here’s a look at the 10 stories that grabbed your attention and sparked multiple conversations across the internet. These stories were the ones that were most read and shared by you, and proved how much our generation is concerned about some of the most pressing issues our society faces. Garnering over 2.5 million readers and over 300K shares, the following are the conversations that started some very intriguing debates:
I Am Not A Kitchen Appliance: A 35 Seconds Advertisement That Debunks ‘Traditional’ Gender Roles
The moment we saw this video, we fell in love with it. Havell’s set the much needed precedent for how advertisements should be made. This 35 second video does three very important things: Breaks the stereotype around how women are and should be treated, questions the way we look at the idea of arranged marriages and tells us how women should really be portrayed in advertisements. A big hat-tip to Havell’s for putting this together. This one topped the charts at YKA with over 1.3 million views.
Putting A Man In A Woman’s Spot. If This Video Doesn’t Make You Cringe I Don’t Know What Will
This was another monumental video for two reasons: It smashes patriarchy in the best possible (and much needed) way, and it started a conversation around how men treat women. 2014 was the year when many of the conversations around gender, feminism and rights started up on YKA in full flow, and all of it were community driven. This video added a unique perspective on how men look at the fight for equality, and scored over 600K views from our community.
“It Was On Our Wedding Night That My Husband Broke The News To Me”
As the year came to an end, Oxfam India and Youth Ki Awaaz got together to participate in the ‘16 Days of Activism‘ from Nov 25th to Dec 10th, by highlighting stories of 16 women who faced violence at home. This story, a part of the 16 days advocacy, was shared thousands of times and read by nearly half a million people. We knew that the compelling stories from the 16 days had an impact when young people from across the country started sharing their own stories of violence that they had experienced, and wanted to talk about it openly.
How Arranged Marriages Push Our ‘Great Indian Morals’ To The Backseat
Arranged marriages are deeply rooted in the Indian culture, but what goes in the minds of people who do get married through this system is less talked about. YKA writer Elisha Mittal shared her personal opinion on YKA, which sparked a conversation and got people talking more and more about arranged marriages in India, the attaches stereotypes and the pressure that both men and women face.
WATCH: The Reality Of The Qatar FIFA World Cup Of 2022 Will Horrify You
2014 was also the year of the FIFA World Cup. While FIFA is known to be a controversial non-profit (see John Oliver’s satire on FIFA) most of the media conversations restricted themselves to the game. What wasn’t talked about was the fact that by the 2022 FIFA World Cup, 4000 migrant workers in Qatar might have died due to inhumane working conditions and human rights violations.
How Times Of India Told Deepika Padukone That She Was “Asking For It”
This needs no introduction. The Times of India’s Bombay Times edition first went on to objectify Deepika Padukone, and then defended themselves by suggesting that she was ‘asking for it’. This rebuttal by Dhruv Arora is not to be missed.
This Powerful Performance By Kalki Koechlin Is A Refreshing Look At Disability And Sexuality
Here is a film showcasing the coming of age journey of a young explicable girl, with cerebral palsy, played by our very own “Girl in Yellow Boots”, Kalki Koechlin. This movie goes on to talk about sexuality and disability and how it connects back to the journey of the protagonist in discovering herself – an important topic that does not find its way in the mainstream conversations, but forms a very important part of sexual and reproductive rights for all.
Arnab Goswami And Rahul Gandhi’s Interview’s Dramatic Reconstruction Is Hilarious
Remember that interview of Rahul Gandhi by Arnab Goswami? Well now replace Arnab with Cyrus Brocha, and Rahul Gandhi with well… Cyrus Brocha. Need we say more?
Dear Shenaz Treasurywala, “A Collective Thirst For Blood” Isn’t The Solution, “It’s Our Shame Too”
Just last month, actor Shenaz Treasurywala came out with an open letter addressed to some of the most influential male celebrities, business tycoons and politicians, asking them to take a stand against violence against women. However, that letter went on to suggest violence as a solution to the problem. Guneet Kaur felt that it was important to address the fact that “a collective thirst for blood” is not the solution. In fact, it represents the same violent culture that violence against women stems from.
I Was Molested In The Delhi Metro, And Here”s Why I Refused To Suffer In Silence
Coming out and talking about the kind of violence one faces in their life takes courage. This piece by Megha Vishwanath needs no description. What it did was very important. After her post, tens of other young women started talking about the violence they faced and took the conversation mainstream.