Whose fire on freedom holds more water?
Fire raised the ire of the Hindu fundamentalists in India after its nationwide release, and Water was watered down in the midst of its filming. Why is a constitutionally secular and historically tolerant country up in arms against its own less-than-sympathetic, yet arguably necessary, self-representations? Is the fire directed against the content of these films, or against its once homegrown and constrained, but now Canadian and “free”, director? Are western pronouncements of a lack of freedom of expression in developing societies like India producing such poetics of disturbance in their waters that a much needed self-appraisal is turning into a chauvinistic brand of religious nationalism?
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