Isha Karki


This article considers how contemporary Hindi cinema engages with traditional cinematic representations of rape and the extent to which it inscribes resistance by rewriting dominant cultural scripts. It analyses Pan Nalin’s Angry Indian Goddesses (2015) and Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury’s Pink (2016) by locating them within the tradition of the avenging woman genre in 1980s Hindi popular cinema. It argues that the historical avenging woman genre was unable to successfully dismantle dominant rape scripts, and that these contemporary films, by subverting the genre, offer alternatives to the problems inherent in the visualisation of rape. It explores issues of eroticisation and spectacle in relation to the sexual violation of women and their retaliatory violence, suggesting that neither can escape commodification in a commercialised film industry.

Author Biography

Isha Karki recently completed her MLitt at Newcastle University. Her dissertation was titled 'Militants, Revolutionaries and Rebels: Women and Violence in South Asia'. Her research interests include post-colonial literature, feminist theory, film, gendered violence and trauma.