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Essay title: Fire

1) I believe that “Fire” is such a dominant motif in this film is because it represents the “God” which prays upon women sexuality. It determines the truth of oneself. But, first of all “Fire” itself is a movie that represents women sexuality in Indian Culture. To see how fire is such a dominant motif in this film we must first understand why “fire” itself is used as the name of the movie. “ Fire represents patriarchy as being founded on the denial of female sexuality. A whole range of oppressive structures targeting myriad aspects of women’s lives become obscured in this narrowing of critical range, this compulsion to name a root cause of women’s subordination” ( Ghosh, Queering India, page 240). The significance of Fire is seen through the characters in some ways. At the start I had mentioned how fire is like a “God” in the movie. It is something which looks upon the mistakes which Sita and Radha are doing. I believe that Ashok and the Grandma is the small flame of the fire, they are the eye which looks upon Sita and Radha’s sexuality. When Ashok knew what was going on, he had gone to tell Sita’s husband, but the husband did not believe Ashok, not the until he saw it himself. I also believe that the grandma is like a god praying over what everyone is doing. She always rings her bell whenever something is not right or gone wrong. Especially when she knew about Sita and Radha’s love for each other, she spat in Radha’s face. Fire also represented very much Sita and Radha’s character. Sita said that she would let god decide her fate. God is the Fire. I believed every single time, Sita and Radha were intimate with each other, it was like fire was going to burn over them, for they were sinning as being women of their culture. Comparing to Sita, obviously, Radha is more traditional. I think she believes what is determined in her life. The part when they were intimate which each other and the husband walked in on them, Radha knew exactly what to do next. She confronted her husband, her sexuality as a women in Indian Culture.

The scene at the end of the movie where Radha’s sari catches on fire is the most significant part of this movie. Radha had said to her husband that “Desire” is important, and “without desire there is no life.” Her husband had pleaded her to come back, but she did not want to, she was going to live with the shame but at the same time seek freedom to her sexuality. When her Sari caught on fire, it represented that god burnt her sari because she had sinned. Although she knew she sinned, she still ran out with shame labeled on her, but was now free to expose herself to her sexuality.

2) The ways in which the values and ideals of the epic story Rama and Sita confirmed and or even contested the film was through the scene where Radha’s Sari had caught on fire and when Sita and Radha were intimate with each other. During the scene when Sita and Radha were intimate with each other, a few minutes during that scene they squeezed in a scene to show story of Ramayana. I believe that this scene contested the unfaithfulness of Radha and Sita to their husbands as compared to Sita in Ramayana where she very loyal to her husband Rama. The values and ideals of the epic story Ramayana showed that women in India are very loyal and shall never betray her husband, like the way that Sita was loyal to her husband. Though she was loyal, Rama never seemed to believe her, he didn’t seem to care for her as much and just left her aside. When Rama left for the forest and left Sita to his brother, he came back and heard that they were having an affair, he had looked down onto Sita with so much shame and thought of how much Sita had sinned. When in deed she was very loyal and kept her faith. After proving that was innocent, by walking through a large flame of fire and came out with no burns or anything. This proved that the fire was like a god and therefore she did not sin. Her name was then clear and she held no shame, fire had cleared out her unloyalty to her husband. From that story people used fire as a sign of god, god that looked upon who was bad and who was good. The epic story or Ramayana had confirmed that fire is really like a god in the film “Fire.” One scene which strongly confirmed it was the scene when after confronting her sexuality with her husband, Radha’s Sari had caught on fire. This proving that in the end she has sinned, she had sinned by having intimate relations with Sita. The fire which burnt the Sari confirmed that god is watching, and fire proves to show that Radha is now shameful to her society and sinned. Another point in which the epic story of Rama was confirmed in the film are the Husbands. Rama never seemed to care once he thought Sita had been unfaithful to him, he just left her aside to do whatever she had to do, or could do to prove herself. So much alike

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