When the kitchen feels oppressive even to women who love cooking
For the first month after she got married, Vernika Awal, 28, hated the idea of entering the kitchen. This was a new sensation for someone who had, until then, always thought of the kitchen as a space in which she could unwind and find a creative outlet. “Cooking would centre me because I never thought of it as a place where I had to be, but a place where I choose to be,” says the Noida-based food writer. She owes that mindset to her parents who were both equally at ease in the kitchen. “They never taught me that the kitchen is a woman’s domain.”
Jeo Baby: “Just having a job doesn’t make a woman independent”
The Great Indian Kitchen, with its confident, unhurried pace and the deliberate anonymity of its location and characters — to emphasise the universality of its story — is a far cry from the slightly gauche preachiness of Baby’s earlier films.
Jeo Baby had a light bulb moment about gender and labour when, as a 17-year-old, he was assigned the