October 8th and 9th, 2004 - 8:00PM
welcome VIJAY TENDULKAR
Followed by a discussion with the playwright himself!!!
Join us all month as we continue our SALAAM Theatre 4-year Anniversary celebrations!!!
KAMALA, written in the naturalistic mode, is a topical play inspired by a real-life incident - the Indian Express exposé by Ashwin Sarin, who actually bought a girl from a rural flesh market and presented her at a press conference. By using this incident as a launching pad, Tendulkar raises certain cardinal questions regarding the value system of a modern success-oriented generation which is ready to sacrifice human values even in the name of humanity itself. The innate self-deception of this standpoint is exposed dramatically by the playwright. At the center of the play is a self-seeking journalist, Jaisingh Jadav, who treats the woman he has purchased from the flesh market as an object that can buy him a promotion in his job and a reputation in his professional life. Jadav never stops to think about what will happen to Kamala after this exposé. Tendulkar makes a jibe at the modern concept of journalism which stresses the sensational. For this, he uses Kakasaheb, a journalist of the old school, who runs a small paper with his own resources. Kakasaheb provides the true ideals of journalism and in contrast to these, Jadav's reporting is shown in a critical light. KAMALA also explores the position of women in contemporary Indian society. Through Sarita, Jadav's wife, who is in her own way as exploited as Kamala, Tendulkar exposes the chauvinism intrinsic in the modern Indian male who believes himself to be liberal-minded. Though Tendulkar suggests that Sarita cannot unlearn what she has come to realize, at the end of the play there is a faint hope of her attaining independence sometime in the future. (Taken from Introduction, Five Plays, OUP, 1992.)
VIJAY TENDULKAR is a leading contemporary Indian playwright, screen and television writer, literary essayist, political journalist, and social commentator. For the past four decades he has been the most influential dramatist and theater personality in Marathi, the principal language of the state of Maharashtra, which has had a continuous literary history since the end of the classical period in India and has nearly seventy-five million speakers today. For more about Vijay Tendulkar go to: http://www.wisc.edu/southasia. Thanks in advance to Vijay Tendulkar for his presence at this event!
Further Details: TBA
This reading is presented by SALAAM Theatre (Geeta Citygirl), The Medicine Show (Barbara Vann) and Professor Howard Pflanzer, as part of the 2004 Tendulkar Festival - in association with the Indo American Arts Council. Thanks to Raksha Kapur for Vijay Tendulkar's Collected Plays in Translation anthology.
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