Bend It Like Beckham

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The film ‘Bend it like Beckham’ main character is an Indian girl, Jess whose dream is to play professional football. However, Jess’s parents are Indians and their culture does not accept Indian girls playing football. The difference of beliefs causes conflict between Jess and her parents and the other characters in the film and highlights the cross-cultural interactions. Culture is a system of values beliefs, assumption and norms shared among a group of people (country, region, religion, profession, organization even a generation or a social or sporting club.

Jess’ parents believe her children should be brought up the traditional way. Marriages are arranged and Indians are not allowed to marry black, white or Muslim only Indian. Jess’s mother revealed that she wore make-up after she was married which was at Jess’s age. Also, when an Indian girl desires to travel overseas it is expected that should be married. The Indian community have a closely knit society so that when Jess’s mother has a decision to make it is normal to consult other Indians. Other Indian traditions are that girls are not allowed to expose their legs since it brings shame to the family and kissing each other on the lips and hugging seems to be widely practiced. The Indians are also very religious and they open speak to a picture on the wall which represent their God.

There were generation and age differences and similarities between Jess’s parents and the children. The children accepted the UK culture in terms of their make-up and wearing traditional clothes like jeans and eye contact lens. One couple was also seen kissing in the public bathroom. The older women were not familiar with some words such as lesbian as they thought it was Lebanese. Another difference relates to Jess’s father who was not accepted when he wanted to play cricket because of his turban, however Jess’ desire to play football is accepted by her teammates. Jess’s father was visibly upset when he saw her...
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