Sometimes certain images linger in your minds even long after they  have beamed in your eyes. I'm not referring to those typical snapshots-in-time images, but those prudent camouflages of harsh truths that seem to have been lost somewhere in eternity. Seizing such moments, which convey much more than what is portrayed, and which evoke emotions and kindles many a thoughts, takes much more than mere talent.; it calls upon a rare combination of passion, creativity and relentless pursuit. To render such a perfect recipe in the very first attempt deserves nothing short of a standing ovation.

Well, kudos to Aamir Khan on his commendable effort for conveying a thought-provoking message and creating awareness on Dyslexia through his directorial debut "Taare Zameen Par"! Last such widely acclaimed movie which portrayed such similar powerful message was in my opinion "Philadelphia" released in 1993, almost more than a decade into the HIV/AIDS epidemic. While there has not been any dearth of movies with a social message, it is only of late that such serious and somber movies as the Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" have shown scattered proofs of movies' capability of inciting some sensitivity, if not a lasting social change, in a subtle and subterranean way. It is not easy to pick on a artsy movie with a message subject such as the side-tracked Dyslexia and weave it into a simple yet a powerful narrative.

Though an estimated 30 million children, which is about 10% of children in regular classroom, are known to be Dyslexic in India, not many are aware, let alone be sensitive, to this learning and attention disorder. What is worse and painful is the shunning of these Dyslexics as mentally disabled - leading the child to feel dumb and isolated. Who could possible imagine that - Einstein, EdisonDa Vinci - who were once pushed-aside, ridiculed and stigmatized in childhood, would become rare creative geniuses to shape the world through their contributions!

A recent study that traces business acumen to Dyslexia, claims that Dyslexics make for fine entrepreneurs as they were more likely than "normal" counterparts to delegate authority, to excel in oral communication and problem solving, and were twice as likely to own two or more businesses. Charles Schwab of the Investment and Financial Management Service by same name and John Chambers of Cisco are a few of many such successful top notch businessmen. Richard Branson, one of the all-time finest businessmen, once admitted in an interview "I had the worst school report ever. They thought I was a hopeless case because I'm dyslexic, although no-one had heard of it in those days. I was always bottom of the class and I left school at 15...".

Well, in a high-pressure society such as India, where scoring A grades and being in the 95+ percentile count for so much, Dyslexia still carries a heavy penalty. One wonders how our educational system would have possibly graded the likes of Einsteins based on its "long-established" assessment methodology! I hope the movie, which couldn't have been better timed and contextualized, is an eye-opener to all those parents who think that the hurdles are insurmountable.

~ Santosh

Priya
12/27/2007 02:19

Finally it took an Aamir Khan and his directorial debut to make Mr. Santosh Srinivas blog without being pessimistic!!!
All said and done, the movie will hog its much deserved limelight, people will talk about it all the more.. we will have a few 'We the People' debates and discussions on news channels probably inviting such children,
But what after all this Hoopla! Life will go back to normal.. people will stall fail to recognize such disorders around them and will continue to be unfair!

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Santosh
12/27/2007 06:35

Thanks for the comments Priya!

I agree with you that this could probably end up being just a "flash-in-the-pan".

Reply
05/03/2011 20:21

Sincerity is the life the highest virtues
A man without letter not made.
True in word and resolute in deed

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