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ISSN 2321 - 4805

  • Ashok Bachhar

    Empowering Voices: The Evolution and Empowerment of Women in Indian Theatre and Drama


    Ashok Bachhar, M.Phil. Research Scholar, Department of Women’s Studies, Jadavpur University, Kolkata, West Bengal


    This paper explores the transformative role of women in the theatre, performance, and drama of the Indian sub-continent, highlighting their journey from the borders to the center stage. Indian theatre is rich in diversity and tradition and is often relegated to women to secondary roles, both on and off the stage. However, the evolution of societal norms and the impact of significant political and cultural movements have catalyzed a remarkable change. Women have emerged not only as performers but also as playwrights, directors, and influential voices in the theatre community. This shift is particularly obvious in the post-colonial era, where females' participation in theatre became identical with political expression and cultural declaration. The paper observes key historical ages, including the traditional systems of theatre in ancient and medieval times, the transformative influence of colonialism, the increasing of feminist theatre in the post-independence era, and the dynamic, diverse contemporary scene. The analysis discloses how women's increasing involvement in theatre has not only enriched the art form with diverse narratives and perspectives but also mirrored and prejudiced broader societal changes.