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The construction of the Muslim as Other in commercial Hindi cinema (often referred to by its portmanteau Bollywood) reflects varying dominant discourses on Indianness, gender and family. In this paper, I analyze visual representation, personality traits, dialogues, lyrics and the aura and ambience weaved around Muslim caricatures in Bollywood films using 5 representative films from the 1950s-70s, 6 from the 1980s-1990s and 14 from 2000s-2020s. I examine how Muslim Other caricatures in commercial Hindi movies from the positive, essentialized, hardworking minority of a united India portrayed through the 80s to the one displaying subaltern sexualities and needing redemption and patronization of the Hindu protagonists portrayed through the 1990s to the sinister and promiscuous one portrayed in the 21st century serve as antidotes to and thus assist in communicating dominant ideologies on gender supremacy, patriarchy, gender roles and Hinduness as Indianness to a rapidly urban audience at home and in diaspora.


Muslim caricatures Bollywood Other Muslim Orient

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How to Cite
Riaz, S. (2023). Un/Familiar Other: The Indian Muslim and Bollywood Filmscapes. European Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 5(4), 31–49.