ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Narrator Matters

Consent and Date Rape in Satyaprem Ki Katha

The film presents a rare opportunity to discuss the importance of consent, autonomy, and the right to say no, even within the context of an existing relationship.

Sameer Vidwanss Satyaprem Ki Katha (2023) is a notable contribution to the evolving corpus of social dramedies (comedy dramas) in Hindi cinema. This film sheds light on the pressing issue of gender-based violence, focusing on the themes of consent and the traumatic aftermath of date rape, an often-overlooked strain of intimate partner violence in the Indian context. The film addresses these topics in a romantic drama, highlighting the disturbing reality faced by many women. And, in doing so, contributes to the discourse about consent in dating and marriage, and highlights how the absence of clear, informed consent can turn both dating and marital relationships into potential spaces for violence and harm.

While the film attempts to address the issues of consent and date rape trauma, the katha (story) is consistently overshadowed by an emphasis on the kathakar or narrator (here, Satyaprem). In an interview with the Hindustan Times, Vidwans remarked that he and the writer, Karan Sharma, wanted to present the narrative through the perspective of a feminist husband. Although the intention is commendable, the male centricity of the narrative is problematic as it perpetuates the idea that women need to be saved, underplaying the complexities of their experiences.

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Published On : 9th Mar, 2024

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