19 Oct This Pakistani Ad Uses ‘Brown Bags’ To Address Major Society Taboos
By Lyza Rashid – Jul 28, 2021
KhairKhwah’s latest advertisement offers food for thought. It is an incredible initiative being taken for the betterment of our society. What comes to mind when you think of the brown bag? Surely, family planning and menstruation. Well, are you ready to break free of the brown bag and society taboos?
The Notorious Brown Bag
The Khaki Lafafa or brown bag is infamous in Pakistan. It is used and given to cover up ‘taboo’ topics. To “protect” society, but from what? From essential products and items that actually benefit society?
The brown bag is used in our society when purchasing sanitary napkins or items. It is also used to cover up contraceptives if someone purchases them. That is precisely what KhairKhwah is trying to break out of and encouraging others to do so. What the brown bag does is that it hides items that are not a harm to society. By constantly covering them behind the khaki bag, we increase the shame surrounding the items and relevant topics.
Read more: This French Campaign Highlights A Taboo In The Most Impactful Way
KhairKhwah was building up hype for its advertisement by following an interesting tagline. Their tagline said: “Soch ko Khaaki Lafafe se azad karo, baat karo”. To further amplify this movement, they plastered relevant pictures on their social media campaigns. Men and women, with brown bags, on their heads, were bound to raise a few eyebrows.
Their ad, when released, made sense and it was much-needed. The ad shows people putting brown bags on their heads each time someone goes against the grain. A wife wants to talk about family planning? The husband and mother-in-law put a brown bag on their head. A man wants to purchase a contraceptive? The other men in line put the bag on their heads.
Watch The Ad Here
The Message Imparted
In essence, KhairKhwah’s ad aims to show us that our society at large is stuck with the brown bag mentality. That things that offer betterment to the society or are simply neutral, must be hushed. KhairKhwah says if you do not talk about it, how will you know about it?
Family planning and menstruation cycles are not a sin. When we break the silence on them, only then can we progress to build a healthy society. Talking about these topics would only serve to dispel myths that also harm many in our society. It’s 2021, it’s time to move past societal taboos that only set us backwards.