VEERA NAARI-BRAVE WOMEN
BY IRENE LADO
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Veera Naari is a trilogy about three Indian women in three stages of human life: infant, adult and senior. As its title indicates in Telugu (local language of the state of Andrapradesh) Veera Naari tells the story of three brave women with a strong fighting spirit to achieve their ideals, overcoming the adversities that life entails in a strongly patriarchal society that, at the same time, remains under the burden of traditions and beliefs anchored in the past.
*** I ALSO WANT TO BE A DANCER***
Sravani is a ten-year-old girl who wants to become a dancer against her parents‘ will. One afternoon, when the dance school is empty, Shiva, the god of dance, in return for Sravani’s attentions, provides her with the energy, security and knowledge that allow her to perform with ease the complex movements of dance. Her parents, at the advice of her school teacher, contemplate the beauty and elegance with which their daughter dances and, in awe, allow her to attend classes. In the course of time, Sravani triumphs in the dance festivals and becomes one of the most famous dancers in India.
After giving birth to her son, Jarita spends three months isolated in a hut to follow her people´s traditions. This fact, which initially saddens her, also opens the possibility of living portentous events and coming in contact with three extraordinary beings: a magical tree, the Moon and the elephant-headed god, Ganesha. Jarita shows her devotion and generosity to each of them and, in return, she receives company, protection and the joy of contributing to preserve the order of nature.
Still very young, Lakshmi cannot continue her studies because her parents force her to marry a man much older than her. After marriage, she lives in her in-laws´ house where she is humiliated and where her value is not well recognised. In search of recognition, Lakshmi becomes a seamstress, inspired by the goddess Parvati. One day, she brings a sari to Parvati who, as soon as she tries it on, becomes her avatar, Durga, the eight-armed goddess. This goddess promises Lakshmi to make her famous, so she takes the sari and shows it to the most famous actresses of Bollywood, who, delighted with the garment, commission Lakshmi to make saris and costumes to wear in their films. Lakshmi achieves fame and advices her granddaughter, Raji, to never let anyone thwart her dreams.
Irene Lado is a language teacher at the Adult School of Torrent (Valencia). Among her written work we can quote some articles for the magazine AROVA of the Romanian Association of Valencia. She has also collaborated as a writer of Romanian stories in English and Spanish in “Stories around the World” (Vaughan Systems, 2014) and in Romanian on the blog of TALIS (a project of tales for solidarity). She has also participated as a project coordinator of the stories of India.