India, Czechia. 2020. 15 min
Kanya intimately explores the inner dissonance of an adolescent girl who is experiencing puberty in a traditional Indian family. Kanya is a successful swimming champion with a promising career in sports. Her world collapses when she gets her first period and her family demands that she accepts the traditional status of a woman. Kanya‘s natural maturing along with her physical and psychological transformation are neglected by her close ones who also curb her freedom. On the outside, Kanya yields to all the demands and accepts her fate without objecting. However, she experiences deep trauma within. Kanya‘s inner disharmony escalates, leading her to finally muster the courage to revolt against the system that clearly defines and sets the standards of the conventional status of a woman.
Born and raised in Chennai, a colourful conglomerate of urban villages, Apoorva was fascinated by the power of Tamil filmdom in state politics, igniting a passion for creating films that are socially and politically aware. To hone her creative skills as a filmmaker, Apoorva travelled to many countries: Sri Lanka, Israel, Italy, Jordan, England, and the USA to work on fiction and non-fiction projects. In 2016, she was selected to attend the International Filmmaking Academy in Bologna under the tutorship of award-winning directors Danis Tanovic and Claudia Llosa. Apoorva recently received her MFA degree from the Film and Tv School of the Academy of Performing arts, FAMU, Czech Republic. Her graduation film Kanya will have its world premiere at the prestigious Busan International Film Festival 2020, followed by a European Premiere at Raindance Film festival 2020 ( England ). Apoorva is currently based in Prague, developing her debut feature film while actively exploring short and long format film projects. Her primary goal is to explore personal stories around socially relevant contemporary ideas and themes.
Gender stereotypes have a significant impact on girls, especially during puberty, as this is the time when they learn what it means to be a woman through labels laid down by society – such as beauty and subservience. The onset of puberty triggers increased pressure from society to conform to hegemonic sextyped identities and roles. Youngsters become primarily aware of these gender stereotypes and roles during this age and begin to assume and accept them as “universal truths”. Consequently, girls’ struggle with self-esteem and selfconfidence twice as much as boys during puberty because society sends out a message that vigour, power and authority are for men, not women.
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