Shanel Khaliq

Shanel Khaliq

The author is a freelance journalist and teacher who is interested in issues related to gender, race and social justice. She tweets @Shanel9999 (twitter.com/Shanel9999)

Hypocrisy 101: Veere Di Wedding is vulgar, but Jawani Phir Nai Ani or Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety weren’t?

Bollywood’s latest female-centric flick, Veere Di Wedding is the most recent film to be banned by the Censor Board of Film Censors (CBFC) from releasing in Pakistan. According to their findings, the film had “vulgar language” and “questionable content”. From the looks of the trailer, Veere Di Wedding is Bollywood’s closest remake of Sex and the City. A tale of four girlfriends who are wading through the rough waters of romance, marriage and family, all the while supporting each other and finding solace in friendship. For South Asian audiences, this movie is almost a pioneer in terms of showing female friendship ...

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Our minorities have found a voice in Pakistani cinema

I still remember when I was first introduced to The Mindy Project by a friend while sitting in her apartment in DC back in 2014. We started binge-watching it for a few nights after dinner during my brief stay with her. When I returned to my internship in Vancouver, I heard one of my colleagues (an Indian-Canadian woman) raving about it. Mindy Kaling is undoubtedly a talented lady and the show has been quite popular – on a separate note, there was something about it that made all the brown girls go crazy. They finally got to see a brown woman in ...

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Does the “Urdu problem” lie with Mah-e-Mir or us?

This Mother’s Day I took my mother out on a date to watch Pakistani cinema’s latest flick Mah-e-Mir. Luckily, it has not been banned as yet. I am not a movie buff per say, but I do end up going to the cinema every other week to take a break from reality. So, I hardly ever read movie reviews before watching movies. I like to watch a movie with a blank mind, having nothing to compare it with and judge it based on the entertainment value. I went in judging from the title that Mah-e-Mir would probably be based on the ...

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Using Tinder is not very different from having an arranged marriage

Growing up in a city as beautiful as Islamabad, can sometimes be a challenge. You run to the store to buy a bottle of milk, with your hair tied up in a bun, wearing flip flops and you bump into the cutest guy from your class. You get me? The struggle to find privacy is real. Introduce the multi-million dollar dating app Tinder to this scenario and imagine the consequences. Here you were looking for the love of your life swiping away that you suddenly saw your Phupi ka beta! (Aunt’s son) Imagine the horror! But what’s more horrific is when certain ...

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February 10, 2016
TOPICS

No, I don’t think my body or my complexion needs to be “fixed” to meet a guy

Born in a country with a colonial past, the light skin fetish has been ingrained in us from time immemorial. My existence was like the biggest curse – I was a girl in a patriarchal society, dark-skinned and slightly overweight.  “2016 is your year,” typed a close male friend of mine on a WhatsApp group of around nine people. The intention for this group was to coordinate my sister’s wedding dance practices but ended up becoming a crazy corner where we all discussed each other’s daily struggles and laughed on lame jokes. The conversation continued, “I am going to give you a makeover.” I replied thanks ...

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