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Jakarta Post

Hidden lesson about poverty and pride from ‘Parasite’

  • Namira Samir
    Namira Samir

    Islamic finance specialist at the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Indonesia

London   /   Thu, February 20, 2020   /  08:46 am
Hidden lesson about poverty and pride from ‘Parasite’ Notes from underground: The characters Geun-sae (left) and his wife Moon-gwang, a housekeeper, from the Oscar-winning film Parasite find safety from the outside world underneath her employer’s opulent home. They represent many others mired in debt who remain unbankable. (CJ Entertainment/-)

Please don’t misinterpret the title; the audience that I intend to talk to comprise not just one or two groups of people. If you are a student, this piece is for you. If you are borrowing money from a cooperative or moneylender to get through the day, this is for you, too. If you own half the world’s wealth, I am talking to you. If you are the decision- maker of the country’s development policy, this is about you. If I have forgotten to mention you, this is still addressed to you, too. Concerns about poverty often rise when there is a sudden exposure to it by a powerful work of art that cinematically depicts what it’s like to live below the poverty line. Consider Parasite, this year’s winner of the Academy Award for Best Picture. The movie became the first foreign movie to take the trophy home. Some talk about how it casts the class war na...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.