Code-Switching & Fashion

The number one thing about the film Kuch Kuch Hota Hai  you can’t possibly ignore is the code-switching. Code-switching is the ability to switch between dialects and languages in a conversation.  I do this with my family and friends switching between Somali and English. In the film that might’ve been a tactic to pull in different viewers such as the west and the likes of.  Its represents double consciousness and dual notions of knowing who you are and embracing different languages whilst embracing yours. I think its very much a representative of mainstream Bollywood.  There’s this hidden political stance about language and never forgetting yours that makes things oddly intense. It becomes almost an oppressive outlook for a person in your culture to not understand the dual you so to speak. Through code-switching this imagined community is created where everyone understands each other . I think nationalism is a given in embracing ones culture and traditional beliefs. Its more of where one draws the line in assimilating with different cultures .  Having boundaries is ok but divisions  aren’t as enforced as one thinks. Similar in the fashion, Unlike the film Lagaan where it was clearly divided up until Elizabeth started falling in love with Bhuvan, The two cultures never experimented with clothing as the film Kuch Kuch Hota Hai  did.  Parts of the film I felt I was watching an American sitcom and parts of the film I felt I was watching anime.  Each film demands a certain intended message and this was not an “us vs them” as the movie Lagaan was. As human beings we yearn for belonging as we navigate life even if we achieve it through “Imagined” communities.

 

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