"digital scrapbook"

"Every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being re-directed to something better."

- Steve Maraboli (via observando)

Aug 21

"Happiness is your nature. It is not wrong to desire it. What is wrong is seeking it outside when it is inside."

- Ramana Maharshi (via observando)

Aug 21
Aug 20


Pakeezah is thus an iconic film.  It is the epitome of Muslim romanticism. It has delicacy and glamour. It has the Urdu language as one of its decorations, with songs which are poems, and dances which are a tribute to the art form itself.  Its story belongs to a certain time, a certain culture and has a definite style; a style which owes everything to Lucknow; not the real, historical city but the city of Muslim imagination.  It is a tribute to a culture which once reigned over north India with its rules of etiquette, its elaborate metaphors for transactions between the sexes, its opulence and its luxuriousness.  Pakeezah, Meghnad Desai.

The Muslim Social-1961-1970

There is a lot that is modern in the 1960s in India. Even the films look outwards and are set in Tokyo, Paris, London and the like. There are exceptions however, and none more so than the Muslim socials of the 1960s. Almost all of them were based on a mythologised culture of andaaz and nazakat and feature a good deal of poetry - often composed and spoken by female characters - and Urdu dialogue.  The costumes of these films influenced fashions, none more so than Mere Mehboob (still in pic 3). Especially the periodic revival of shararas and ghararas. And sitara work dupattas at the very least:)

There were outliers e.g. Dharmputra (pic 2), which dealt with partition but on the whole the films are light romances evoking a pre-partition culture. The other film which is an outlier is Pakeezah (pic 6).  While arguably the pinnacle of the form, it is more of a 50s film that was taken up in the 1960s and finally screened in 1972. Its fame rests on many things, including its music.  That music, while rooted in the culture the Muslim social tried to recreate, was so old-fashioned in the 1960s that its composer, Ghulam Mohammed, died in extreme poverty and obscurity in 1968 unable to find work*. Pakeezah itself had a tepid opening, its success and iconic status a result of Meena Kumari's death.

There were brief revivals in the 1980s (Umrao Jaan, Nikaah) but the 1960s was probably the last decade of the romantic films of the genre.

Other examples of the 1960s: Chaudvin ka Chand (pic 1), Mere Huzoor (pic 4), Gazal (pic 5), Benazir, Dil hi to hai, Palki.

Articles on Muslim socials: [X, X]

*His last film prior to Pakeezah, Shama was a 1961 film starring Suraiya.

"There are a few moments in your life when you are truly and completely happy, and you remember to give thanks. Even as it happens you are nostalgic for the moment, you are tucking it away in your scrapbook."

- David Benioff (via observando)

Aug 20

"Happiness is the most natural thing in the world when you have it, and the slowest, strangest, most impossible thing when you don’t. It’s like learning a foreign language: You can think about the words all you want, but you’ll never be able to speak it until you suck up your courage and say them out loud."

- Dan Wells, Partials (via observando)

Aug 20

"If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. If they don’t, they never were."

- Khalil Gibran (via observando)

Aug 19

"The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward."

- Steve Maraboli (via observando)

Aug 18

"The things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone, but the things you do for others remain as your legacy."

- Kalu Ndukwe Kalu (via observando)

Aug 18

"Simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. Simple in actions and thoughts, you return to the source of being. Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are. Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world."

- Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching (via observando)

Aug 18

"So when people leave, I’ve learned the secret: let them. Because, most of the time, they have to. Let them walk away and go places. Let them have adventures in the wild without you. Let them travel the world and explore life beyond a horizon that you exist in. And know, deep down, that heroes aren’t qualified by their capacity to stay but by their decision to return."

- The Staying Philosophy (Everyday Isa)

(Source: everydayisa.wordpress.com, via sidroo)

Aug 18