How Dangal Movie Challenges Gender Stereotypes #CauseAChatter

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How Dangal Movie Challenges Gender Stereotypes

How Dangal Movie Challenges Gender stereotypes
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As part of Blogchatter’s #CauseAChatter prompt, I was asked to write about a movie that mirrors a crucial social cause. Therefore with the ongoing protests against sexual harassment of female wrestlers, naturally, my thoughts went to the pathbreaking Hindi film “Dangal” which sought to change traditional gender stereotypes.

The premise of Dangal

The movie “Dangal” addresses gender stereotypes in several ways, highlighting their impact on individuals and society as a whole. Here are some ways the film explores and challenges gender stereotypes:


Dangal movie challenges Gender stereotypes by contesting the idea of Wrestling as a Male Sport

Notably, the film addresses the perception that wrestling is primarily a male sport. Mahavir Singh Phogat , the father and and an ex-wrestler, challenges this notion by training his daughters, Geeta and Babita, to become professional wrestlers. By showcasing their talent and success in a traditionally male-dominated field, the movie “Dangal ” challenges the notion that certain sports are exclusive to one gender.

Societal expectations of Women’s Roles

Secondly , “Dangal” portrays the societal expectations placed on women regarding their roles and behavior. Wrestling was an unconventional sport for girls. Therefore Geeta, Babita and their Father face resistance ,ridicule and criticism from their community for participating in wrestling. The film challenges the stereotype that women should conform to traditional gender roles and emphasizes that they should have the freedom to pursue their passions.

Physical Strength and Capability

Furthermore, the movie Dangal challenges the stereotype that women are physically weaker than men. Through rigorous training and determination, Geeta and Babita prove that they possess the strength and capability to compete at the highest level in wrestling. The film highlights that physical abilities should not be limited by gender, debunking the myth that men are inherently stronger than women.

Balancing Femininity and Athleticism

The movie “Dangal” explores the idea that femininity and athleticism are not mutually exclusive. Geeta and Babita struggle with societal expectations regarding their appearance and femininity as they pursue wrestling. The film challenges the notion that women must choose between being feminine and participating in physically demanding activities. It further highlights that women can excel in any field while embracing their identity and femininity.

Dangal movie challenges Gender stereotypes by breaking Gender Norms

The movie Dangal challenges gender stereotypes , that are deeply ingrained in society and hence dictate women’s behavior, choices, and aspirations. It portrays the sisters Geeta Phogat and Babita Phogat as strong, determined, and ambitious individuals who challenge societal expectations. Their journey serves as a powerful example of defying gender norms and pursuing personal goals. They inspire viewers to question and challenge gender stereotypes in their own lives. Subsequently, the two women wrestlers once welcomed by wolf whistles when stepping into the arena , become a source of great pride and give identity to their village.

Through its storyline and character development, “Dangal” effectively addresses and challenges gender stereotypes prevalent in Indian society. The film emphasizes the importance of breaking free from restrictive gender roles and promoting equal opportunities for all. It encourages viewers to question and challenge societal norms that limit individuals based on their gender. It thus  promotes a more inclusive and egalitarian society.

Not only does Dangal challenges gender stereotypes, but it also highlights other social causes worth mentioning. Some key aspects of the film that contribute to its promotion of a social cause are:

Women Empowerment

“Dangal” tells the inspiring true story of Mahavir Singh Phogat and his daughters Geeta and Babita Phogat, who become successful wrestlers despite societal expectations and gender stereotypes. The movie showcases the immense potential of girls and women in a traditionally male-dominated sport and encourages the idea that women can achieve great heights when given equal opportunities.

Parental Support and Belief

Dangal movie challenges Gender stereotypes
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Even today, particularly in rural India, couples who cannot produce a male child are looked down as being less fertile or having problems. Despite social pressure, “Dangal” portrays Mahavir Singh Phogat as a supportive father who believes in his daughters’ abilities and dreams. His famous dialogue – “Hamari Chhoriyaan chhoron se kam hain ke “,  meaning “Are our daughters any less than our boys,” made my heart soar.


The film showcases the positive impact of parental support, which is crucial for any child’s development, regardless of gender. It encourages parents to break away from societal norms and nurture their children’s talents and ambitions.

Education and Sports

The movie emphasizes the significance of education and sports as means of empowerment. It demonstrates how pursuing sports can provide opportunities for personal growth, discipline, and empowerment. Additionally, “Dangal” shows how education plays a vital role in shaping a person’s worldview and breaking down societal barriers.

Dangal movie challenges gender stereotypes by addressing Patriarchy

The film addresses the issue of patriarchy, highlighting the discrimination and prejudices faced by girls and women in Indian society. It sheds light on the challenges faced by the Phogat sisters and their father as they navigate the rigid patriarchal norms. By showcasing these struggles, the movie encourages viewers to question and challenge such oppressive social structures.


The movie’s inspirational storyline and strong performances resonate with audiences, creating awareness and sparking conversations about gender equality and women’s empowerment. It serves as a source of motivation for individuals facing similar societal obstacles and encourages them to challenge and overcome gender-based limitations.


Overall, “Dangal” promotes a social cause by challenging gender norms, advocating for women’s empowerment, and encouraging equal opportunities for all. It inspires viewers to rethink traditional gender roles and encourages them to support and uplift girls and women in society.


This post is powered by Blogchatter’s initiative #CauseAChatter where we take up social causes.


This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla in collaboration with Zariya Healings.

Which movie champions or highlights a social issue for you?

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