Powerful video shows problem with telling boys not to cry
Boys Don't Cry video by Vogue India (Vogue India/YouTube)
Published Wednesday, October 22, 2014 12:21PM EDT
A magazine in India is trying to change the culture and stem the violence in the country where almost 100 women are raped every day, and a crime against a woman is committed every three minutes.
Those startling statistics come from India’s National Crime Records Bureau, which also reports the numbers are climbing. Now Vogue India is trying to reverse the trend with a new video that hopes to teach boys to treat girls and women with respect and as equals.
The two-minute film titled 'Boys Don't Cry' starts with a series of scenes in which boys of all ages are told to stop their tears because crying is for girls.
The video then shows a man on the verge of tears, before panning out to reveal him physically abusing a woman.
"We have taught our boys not to cry. It's time we teach them not to make girls cry," a woman says as the video ends.
An article in Vogue India explains the connection between what parents teach their boys and how men behave later in life:
"When we teach young boys at an early age to not do something 'like a girl' – the distinction that what a girl does is insignificant is imprinted in the young boy's mind. Growing up, when these boys don't see eye to eye with their partners they feel the need to enforce their views through aggression."
In a behind-the-scenes video, managing director of Conde Nast India Alex Kuruvilla says that the short film was initially inspired by comments actress Susan Sarandon said during the Goa Film Festival: "If you want to make a change, start with the boys."
Vogue, a Conde Nast publication, worked on the video with Bollywood film director Vinil Mathew.
When they started to develop the concept, Kuruvilla says they realized "people don't do the right thing."
"The idea of the film is centred around the fundamental truth that women's empowerment is not about women alone," Kuruvilla says to Vogue India. "Which is why I pledged to create a short film that communicates clearly the need to change the mindset of boys before they become men."