Nike Da Da Ding: The Other Women is an ode to real women, but what's with the labels?

FP Staff

July 27, 2016 17:38:15 IST

A video called Nike Da Da Ding: The Other Women has been making the rounds of social media ever since it was shared on YouTube on Tuesday, 26 July.

Using visuals from Nike's popular Da Da Ding video, which features Indian woman athletes like Joshna Chinappa, Rani Rampal, Jyoti Ann Burrett and Tanvie Hans in addition to actor Deepika Padukone, The Other Women depicts the feats of well, other women.

A screengrab from 'Nike Da Da Ding: The Other Woman' video. Courtesy YouTube

A screengrab from 'Nike Da Da Ding: The Other Women' video. Courtesy YouTube

It juxtaposes the athletes playing their sports against women, mostly from rural areas, engaged mostly in manual labour. They work in the fields or at construction, carry water over long distances and perform the many backbreaking household tasks that are required of them — barefoot.

The makers of The Other Women say it's an ode to: "the women who have been doing it anyway, for centuries. Without appreciation, without support, often, in very difficult conditions. With great co-operation. Definitely without shoes that cost more than what they earn in a month."

The Other Women is a commendable effort. But does it have to make its point at the expense of the athletes in Da Da Ding?

Firstpost had done an extensive feature on the athletes who were part of the Nike video (you can read the profile here). These are athletes who've devoted their entire lives to excelling at a sport. Some of them are from what we may call privileged backgrounds, but not all of them are. Rani Rampal, for instance, hails from a village and has been vocal about how she never let her humble beginnings hinder her big aspirations.

Others — like India's first female professional surfer Ishita Malviya and women's cricket team member Harmanpreet Kaur — have worked hard to make an impression in sports where the conversation is dominated by men.

Then there is Namrata Purohit, the seemingly privileged celebrity Stott Pilates instructor who works out with Deepika in the video. She used to be a national-level squash player whose sporting career came to an end when she underwent knee surgery at the age of 16.

So while they may have expensive branded shoes now, they have worked to get to where they have.

The Other Women misses the fact that the Da Da Ding video shows women athletes in a light that they aren't too often seen in; it's a light that's almost exclusively reserved for their male counterparts. Getting endorsement deals is a big deal simply because for women athletes, they're difficult to come by.

The Other Woman is commendable; it says things that need to be said, it recognises the millions of women who need to be recognised, for living incredibly difficult lives, and for making no fuss about the fact that they lead incredibly difficult lives.

All across the country, and the world, they go on with nothing more than their grit — and yes, certainly without expensive branded shoes.

But we have the feeling that if you asked them, they wouldn't grudge the women in the Nike video theirs.

Watch The Other Women here:

And see the original Da da Ding video here:

Updated Date: Jul 27, 2016 17:45 PM