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An alarming portrait of India's extreme right

Our Strengths
Regissør: Anand Patwardhan
( India)

NATIONALISM: The far right is thriving all over the world, but how many in the West are following and understanding the extent of the far right in India?

Anand Patwardhan's full-length documentary Our Strengths – which won the award for best full-length documentary at the Amsterdam Film Festival last year – is an important introduction to Indian history and a warning to the rest of the world. The film gives a thorough insight into India's outer right and deals with demonstrations, hate speech and its effects, but also the people who dare to resist and advocate for such currents. Many of them end up paying their own lives for the courage they show. The film is both a thought provoking and an addictive experience, an intense journey through India's past and present
- every minute contributes to creating a disturbing portrait of what has gradually developed into one of the largest secular democracies in the world.

The illusion of an Indian "golden age"

Patwardhan weaves together more than a century of Indian history into a complicated but also clear narrative, revealing the roots of Hindu nationalism and the hatred of "the other." The effects of the Hindutva – the ideology that seeks to establish hegemony for the Hindus and their way of life – can be seen throughout the community, and the film shows the way this ideology fires up under caste prejudice and promotes anti-egalitarian principles derived from the ancient Indian religious tradition, bramanismen.

Some of the events featured in the film have appeared in the international media over the years. It becomes clear that they are neither isolated nor randomly selected, and the magnitude and cumulative effect they have becomes particularly apparent when viewed against an Indian social and. . .

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Bianca-Olivia Nita
Nita is a freelance journalist and critic for Ny Tid.

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