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Asghar Wajahat’s Unborn in Lahore and Salman Khurshid’s Sons of Babur: Rehistoricising the Hindu-Muslim Rivalry

Joydeep Bhattacharyya

Assistant Professor of English, Kurseong College, Darjeeling, India. orcid.org/0000-0002-0329-3756. Email: b_joydeep31@rediffmail.com

Volume 9, Number 4, 2017 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v9n4.11

Received October 30, 2017; Revised November 20, 2017; Accepted November 30, 2017; Published December 09, 2017.

Abstract

Indian theatre, after Independence, often engages with contentious issues, though squeamishness about communal realities, particularly the Hindu-Muslim relations and politics, seems to persist. Asghar Wajahat’s Unborn in Lahore and Salman Khurshid’s Sons of Babur are two examples where Indian theatre daringly questions the Islamised and the Hinduised characters of Pakistan and India respectively, confronting the communalised Hindu-Muslim identities and relations head-on. In the present study, it remains to be seen how the two plays interrogate the narrative of arch-rivalry between the two communities and, by extension, the two countries, whose present is always haunted by the spectre of past. The study aims to see how the ‘true’ history of communal rivalry has been reread by ‘false’ history in the plays; how the rereading rehistoricises the naturalised rivalry; and how the plays empower the suppressed voices of harmony, enriching a theatrical tradition of critique and plurality.

Keywords: Hindu, Muslim, India, Pakistan, partition, Indian theatre.

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