This book combines multiple theoretical approaches to provide a fresh perspective on Bollywood—just as a Bollywood film that transgresses multiple genres—and challenges the homogenizing tendencies in much of the ongoing scholarship in the area. It covers five areas of controversial theorization: the religious frame, the musical frame, the subaltern frame, the (hetero) sexual frame and the ‘crossover’ frame. By deconstructing each of these hegemonic paradigms, it reshapes the understanding of a Bollywood film and restructures its relationships with multiple disciplines including film and theatre studies, postcolonial studies, South Asian studies, queer studies, and transnational studies.
This fusion is also representative of the larger objective of this work, namely, to destabilize Bollywood's position within any one sphere of reference and, instead, to illuminate how several realms of meaning are at play in its construction. The aim in doing so is to demonstrate how a variety of critical methodologies can enable a more comprehensive reading of the films making up this corpus.
Usage Problem: Simulation and Hyper-Assimilation in the (Crossover) Bollywood Film
In the preceding chapter, the various strategies of Kal Ho Naa Ho and Dostana were examined in relation to contemporary theoretical paradigms of cultural identity and representation in Bollywood. In many ways, these films can be seen as embodying the central tenets of contemporary Bollywood cinema, engaging in ‘play’, even as they seriously reformulate—one might even say, undermine—previous notions of ‘Indianness’. In keeping with this line of inquiry, it is my intention in this final chapter to examine the postmodern strategies of the twenty-first century Bollywood film in relation to contemporary films stemming from the West that attempt to approximate or, in some cases, appropriate, the ...