Saturday, 13 July 2013

Contemporary Marital Issue: obsession with white skin

     Obsession with complexion is a universal phenomenon that is as old as mankind and the Pakistani society is no stranger to it. Marital issues have gravely become widespread predicaments and one of them includes the irrational judgments of mothers-in-law. Preferences for a lighter skin tone have become so deeply rooted in the society that countless girls who are regularly rejected merely on the basis of colour are now experiencing psychological trauma. Through this article, I shall be examining the prevalent racist mentality of uneducated mothers-in-law, how girls are affected by these unreasonable inclinations and the role of the media around the turn of the century.

     Concept of beauty varies across cultures. In the West, white people strive for darker skin tones and spend money to travel to south just the get a tan in order to look beautiful. However, in Pakistan it is a completely different state of affair. Girls, and as of recently, guys, spend hefty amounts of money on whitening cosmetics, visits to dermatologists and cosmetic surgeries to lighten their skin tones, only to be presentable and accepted by society. Preferences for a fair complexion underline the darker, ludicrous facade of the society which is slowly, emotionally damaging young girls who face rejection for being dark-skinned, making them feel hopeless and like lost causes.

     There have been numerous cases when dark-skinned girls are rejected. The scenario becomes like a live drama – where the girl graciously serves tea and ultimately ends up irrationally discarded on the basis of her skin tone and disconcerted due to tactless and insensitive remarks by the guys’ mothers. An educated individual truly feels profoundly ashamed of living in a society that has fallen victim to racial discrimination. 

     It is utterly preposterous that girls are inappropriately judged on outward appearance, and not inner character. Do mothers-in-law really believe that a fair complexion leads to lasting marital happiness and success? It is entirely nonsensical to favour outward appearance over inner beauty. It is true that mostly mothers-in-law disregard an excellent education, career or character in favour of a light complexion. 

     The media has also played a significantly crucial role in promoting a desire for fair skin. More often than not, uneducated dermatologists appear on shows and absurdly give tips for fairer skin tones. It is no wonder thousands are spent on whitening cosmetics because a fair complexion is what attracts positive attention and leaves a good impression for many untoward people who possess a racist mindset. Girls are unaware of the fact that they are actually causing irreparable damage to their natural skin by transforming their skin tone. It is disheartening to realize what the foolish preferences of society, specifically mothers-in-law, have led to. To think that many girls experience depression or psychological disturbance only because of their skin colour is overwhelming.

     This is one of the many issues that seriously need to be altered in order to prevent the collapse of the society. Those who are obsessed with whiteness should consider that inner beauty of character exceeds outward beauty and education. An educated mother brings up educated children. Society should alter its impractical mindset so that future generations do not fall victim to it. Fair skin should not get in the way of what makes a progressive society.

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