Indian author, actor, and film director Written By: See Article History Girish Karnad, born May 19, , Matheran , Bombay Presidency [now in Maharashtra], India—died June 10, , Bengaluru , Karnataka , Indian playwright, author, actor, and film director whose movies and plays, written largely in Kannada , explore the present by way of the past. After graduating from Karnataka University in , Karnad studied philosophy, politics, and economics as a Rhodes scholar at the University of Oxford — He wrote his first play , the critically acclaimed Yayati , while still at Oxford. He wrote the screenplay and played the lead role in the film, an adaptation of an anti caste novel of the same name by U. Karnad followed with Vamsha Vriksha , codirected by B.

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The play revolves around the 14th century historical figure of Muhammad Tughlaq. Karnad deals with history of that time in the play.

The play is obviously a historical play with a fine blending of fact and fiction in its narrative. In the play Karnad followed the traditional sources of the life and times of Tughlaq. He studied deeply the facts related to Muhammad Tughlaq before writing Tughlaq.

He deviated from history when it becomes necessary for him from artistic and technical point of views. In Tughlaq, Karnad delineates the last five years of the reign of Tughlaq. Karnad is one of the greatest dramatists of modern India. His play Tughlaq is his masterpiece. Introduction: A historical play seems to be a contradiction in terms. History requires truth to the events of the past, but art require imagination and concentration on needs of art. In other words that the writer of a historical play, must use the facts of history with discretion to suit the needs of his drama while maintaining overall truth to history.

He has to deviate from the facts of history, and even introduce new characters in the interest of dramatic effectiveness. This is what Karnad has also done in the present play. Girish Karnad closely follows historical sources in this respect. It is based on the life and history Muhammad Tughlaq who ruled over quite a large part of India with Delhi as its capital in the beginning.

But historical facts alone are not enough to make a story a work of literature. Only historical facts alone are not enough to make a play interesting and history requires truth to the events of the past. Art requires imagination. In other words, a writer of a historical play enacts the structure of his drama on some facts of history but along with this he uses the fact according the need of his drama.

Sometimes he deviates from the facts of history. He sketches him as an embodiment of idealism, scholarship and Hindu-Muslim unity. In the first scene of the play Tughlaq is depicted as a generous Sultan. Now he returns his land and also gives him five hundred silver coins as compensation. The Brahman is offered a post in the civil services so that he may have a regular and adequate income.

In his opinion, the Sultan is being criticized by an infidel which is an insult to Islam. The young man defends the liberal attitude of the Sultan. He appreciates his devotion to Islam. The young man says to the old man that now he prays five times a day because it has been made obligatory by the Sultan.

If he misses his prayer, he will be punished. He tells Sheikh Imamuddin, that it is difficult for him to get himself free from Greek influence. He says, I still remember the days when I read the Greeks- Sukrat who took poison so that he could give the world the drink of gods. Karnad does not sketch Tughlaq as repentant for his evil deed of killing his father and brother. Historical records prove that Tughlaq was filled with remorse over the killing of his father. It is a turning point in his carrier and it causes inexpressible suffering to the common people.

Historic evidence also proves that Tughlaq took the drastic step to shift the capital for effective administrative control of south. The general Hindu public remained unaffected by this project.

In order to prove that Sultan Tughlaq was a devil, Karnad greatly alters the historical facts of the rebellion of Ain-ul-Mulk. In it he very much deviates from history. Karnad is inclined to prove that Sultan Muhmad Tughlaq was an evil genius. He has, therefore greatly altered the historical facts of the revolt of Ain-ul-Mulk. Karnad makes Tughlaq weak. Tughlaq replaced them by copper coins. Karnad also went to other historical authorities on medieval India.

It is interesting to note that Karnad is not a slove to historical accounts. He deviates from historical sources whenever he feels it necessary for artistic and dramatic purposes.

Karnad follows the conventional accounts in creating the atmosphere of mutual distrust, frustrated idealism, corruption, unrest and communal intolerance not only the circumstances but also the personalities of the major characters are in keeping with the historical account.

Tughlaq is the central character in the play. Karnad closely follows historical sources in the presentation of these qualities. He portrays Tughlaq as a generous and charitable Sultan in the very first scene. The Sultan is shown making a grant of silver dinars to the Brahmin and also giving him a post in the civil service.

The Sultan also invites non-Muslim scholars for discussion. He used to have discussions with Muslims, Hindus and Jain scholars. This shows the liberal attitude of Sultan in case of religion. He affects alteration of the facts to suit his artistic design. He refers to numerous problems faced by the Sultan both natural and manmade. It is just to highlight the idea that Tughlaq was losing his grip over the thing.

The various problems like lawlessness, corruption, rebellions and draught etc. The dramatist aims to present a particular picture before the reader eyes to suit his dramatic design. Even the Sultan seems to be influenced by him. In history Najib is not a very important character. Conclusion: Prof. Naik points out that Tughlaq is a historical play on the life of Sultan Muhammad-Bin-Tughlaq of the 14th century India.

Karnad projects the curious contradictions in the complex personality of the Sultan who was at once a dreamer and a man of action, benevolent and cruel, devout the godless. So it is to be concluded that the play Tughlaq is a classic play as well as a famous historical play. Delhi: Oxford University Press, Kulkarni, P.

The Dramatic World of Girish Karnad. Creative Books Nanded, Kumar N.


Hayavadana Summary by Girish Karnad

Karnad decided to rise to the challenge. Watching a powerful man crack up, whenever it occurs, is a bad time in history. Tughlaq was first staged in Urdu in as part of a National School of Drama student production directed by actor Om Shivpuri, then a student. A revival of the play in Delhi this weekend comes at an interesting point when books are questioning older books about dead rulers with bad press -- such as Aurangzeb — and the appropriate way to look at figures of history. Should one laugh at him or listen to him? Was he a visionary or an insecure politician? Were his projects an expression of madness or driven by political calculation?



Since it was necessary for her to earn a living, she began working as a nurse and cook general housekeeper for the bedridden wife of a certain Dr. Raghunath Karnad, a doctor in the Bombay Medical Services. Some five years later, and while the first wife was still alive, Krishnabai and Dr. Raghunath Karnad were married in a private ceremony.

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