“Story of Menstruation” by Disney—released in 1946!
It’s the 21st Century and yet what India couldn’t do in this modern age, the world outside had done it ages ago. Remember the time of Gandhi and Nehru when the only strength women received was the right to vote? At the very same time people, Disney productions released a video titled “Story of Menstruation” that was made to show in about 105 American schools in their health education classes. Menstruation in India has never been more than a Hush! and a silent whispering. Every girl in the current century has experienced the tensed voice and the hesitant conduct of her mother while secretly sharing the “faults of nature”, deliberately ending with a cautious warning: Never mention it when men are around!. Trust me, only Whisper, Stayfree and other pad selling companies have been able to talk about it- yes, saying “periods” openly is indeed quite something! When one asks of why this has to be a secret, which is logical, it is often met with illogical answers, which technically are obviously logical- Religious Mythology- our tradition. Be it Eve’s sin causing The Fall or the stain on the holiness of a Hindu woman, Menstruation always brings impurity and blasphemy, along with “Don’t touch this! Don’t touch that!” On the other hand, or should we say, “on the other side of the world” (since the difference is way too much), people abroad call it “Flowering”, like the blossoming of a little bud into a beautiful flower that can now bear seeds of fruits. No wonder “flowering” helped a lot of teenage girls in the U.S.A to make something of their lives than in India. Impurity converted into knowledge, have a peek at how Disney did it:
———— ABOUT THE AUTHOR: This article is written by Ananya Pal.