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Shefali Shah on experiencing ingrained sexism from in-laws: ‘When Vipul goes to shoot, nobody questions…’

Shefali Shah recalled instances where she has experienced ingrained sexism at home, from her in-laws. She said her mother-in-law is concerned when her husband is washing utensils, but not when she does the same.

shefali shah humanShefali Shah in a still from Human.

Actor Shefali Shah said in an interview that she has experienced ingrained sexism at home, especially from her in-laws. But she said that it is understandable since they’re from a ‘different generation’. The actor, who is best known for films such as Monsoon Wedding, Dil Dhadakne Do, and The Last Lear, and the series Delhi Crime.

In a conversation with Pinkvilla, she was asked if being an opinionated person has ever gone against her. The actor, who is married to director Vipul Amrutlal Shah, said that she comes across as opinionated, but she’s just passionate when she is having conversations. “When I was growing up, I just followed what my mom said, or what my parents said, and I didn’t even question it,” she said, adding that she is impressed by youngsters today, who have so many opinions about things.

Also read: Navya Nanda on ingrained sexism at home: ‘My mother tells me to play the host when guests are over’

She said, “I’m picked on a lot by my family. The thing is, I’m very passionate, and that’ll come across in the way I have a conversation… On a certain level, maybe from your in-laws, but they belong to a different generation. Like, I remember, when Vipul goes to shoot, obviously nobody questions, but when I’m shooting continuously, it’s like, ‘Again you have to shoot?’ And I’m like, ‘Are you serious? Did I just get asked that question?’ Or, it’s like, ‘You’re shooting for so many hours?’ That’s how it works, how come that question is never asked to your son?”

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The actor said that she is great at taking care of her household–“Cooking, cleaning, washing dishes, jhaadu, pochha, bartan, kapda, dusting, I’m fantastic…”–but it reminded her of another example of how she’s treated differently.

She added, “I remember, once, Vipul was doing the dishes. My mother-in-law was standing behind him, and none of us wanted her to do it. And I remember her saying, ‘Itna bada director bartan ghas raha hai (Such a big filmmaker is washing dishes).’ I thought it was so hilarious. And I’m thinking in my mind, ‘Actress bartan ghas rahi hai, yeh khayal kabhi nahi aayega (But you’ll never hear them say this about an actress)’. He’s a big director, yes, but what does that have to do with the house? He’s a homemaker as much as I am.”


Shefali Shah had the busiest year of her career last year, and is looking forward to the release of Darlings, starring Alia Bhatt and Vijay Varma, and the long-delayed second season of Delhi Crime. She will also be seen in Doctor G and Jalsa.

First published on: 02-03-2022 at 09:15:23 am
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