Stereotypes In Bend It Like Beckham

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One of the themes in Gurinder Chadha’s 2002 movie Bend it like Beckham is how gender roles in society are shaped by cultural norms. The movie shows that stereotyping is universal despite culture. Stereotypes are beliefs with which we classify groups of people. Since both Jules’s and Jess's mothers believe in stereotypes regarding the roles of women in their particular cultures both Jess and Jules find themselves in situations where their mothers do not approve of their dedication to playing soccer. In Jess’s family Mrs. Bhamra is an example of ideal Indian femininity because she is almost always shown preparing, serving, or eating food. The preparation of meals is a representation of continuity of culture, as are her attempts to teach her daughters to do and be the same.…show more content…
While bringing a soccer ball into the kitchen is an assertion of her own identity, Jess’s family interprets this as a threat to their culture. In the movie Jess's mother says, “Who would want a daughter that can run around playing football all day but can’t cook?" (Chadha, 2002). Jess and her mother have incompatible opinions of what Jess should do with her future. In another scene Jess brings home soccer shoes instead of dress shoes for her sister’s wedding she is criticized for spending the money on “useless shoes”, and forced to take them back. Jess uses shoes from Jules’s closet instead to please the wishes of her mother. Choosing soccer over the “proper” behavior for a woman is inconsistent with the ideal of Indian femininity according to Jess’s family, especially her

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