“Feminism” is an Ideology that demands equal rights for men and women in terms of politics decision-making, career, and having Children. It is considered a struggle to achieve the same rights, opportunities, and dignity as men have in society.
About half of the global human population is women. At every step, all over the world, women face inequality subordination, and secondary class status. Before the first Industrial Revolution, human life was not male-dominated and both men and women contributed equally in society. The Industrial Revolution began in England in about 1750-1760 and lasted sometime between 1820 and 1840. During this period women were restricted to the domestic atmosphere and men started to work in industries. As a result, women remain vulnerable socially politically, and economically.
Definition of Feminism
The term “Feminism” came into use during the 1890s but its origin can be traced to the late 17th century. There is no fixed definition of Feminism and it has a variety of meanings and interpretations. In different fields of life, we define feminism according to its own social, political, religious, and cultural perspective.
In short, “Feminism is a movement to end sexism, sexiest exploitation and oppression.”
According to the Cambridge Dictionaries, Feminism can be seen as “The belief that women should be allowed the same rights, power, and opportunities as men and be treated in the same way, or the set of activities intended to achieve this state.”
As a social movement, the main Characteristics and demands of Feminism include:
The Right of an Education.
Equal pay in work the workplace.
Fighting against gender stereotypes and performative behaviour.
Protection against sexual harassment and assault.
The rights of own property.
The general purpose of Feminism through centuries is to establish opportunities and results for women equal to those allotted to men. There are four distinct waves of feminism that align with the period of time.
These waves are –
19th to 20th Century
Right of Vote
1960s to 1980s
Domesticity & Sexuality
1990s to 2000s
Diversity & Intersectionality
2000 to present
The Portrayal Of Women and Feminism In India
Indian Women have been facing challenges in the form of Inequalities, and mental and physical violence acts. The portrayal of Feminism in Indian Literature is considered to be one of the most debated topics.
The portrayal of Feminism in Indian Literature goes back to ancient Indian History. “Ramayana” is considered to be one of the Greatest epics of Indian Literature written by Valmiki. In this epic, the Characters of women have depicted the real condition of Indian Women in the Ancient period. The Character of Sita who is the Wife of Lord Ram has justified the power and strength of her husband Rama. She has also been portrayed as vulnerable without her husband. The epic has made Lord Rama an Exemplary protagonist at the cost of the Rejection of his wife. She gave “Agni Priksha” to prove her purity to become Ram’s wife when she returned from Lanka.
Toru Dutt, a 19th-century Indian poet, expressed her pain and grief through her poem “Sita” and questioned the dominance of Indian Patriarchal society.
Feminism In The Indian Context
Feminism in the Indian Context can be divided into three Phase
First Phase – 1850 to 1915
The first phase of Indian feminism was started in the mid-nineteenth century. At this time India was to assimilate the Western idea of Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity. The first phase of Indian Feminism was initiated by men to uproot the social evils of Sati-Pratha and allow widow remarriage. Indian societies also forbid child marriage and to reduce illiteracy. However, as nationalist movements emerged in India, Indian society was improving the status of women by the late 19th century.
Second Phase – 1915 to 1947
During this period the struggle against colonial rule intensified. Nationalism became the pre-eminent cause. Gandhi legitimized and expanded Indian women’s public activities by initiating them into the non-violent civil disobedience movement against the British Raj. Peasant women played an important role in rural Satyagrah as of Borsad and Bardoli. Women-only organizations like ‘All India Women’s Conference’ and the ‘National Federation Od Indian Women’ emerged Women were grappling with issues relating to the scope of women’s political participation, women’s franchise, communal awards, and leadership roles in political parties.
Third Phase, Post 1947
Post-independence Indian literature has portrayed the condition of women in new dimensions. The real suffering of a peasant woman in rural India can be witnessed in ‘Nactor in a Sieve’ a novel by ‘Kamala Markandaya’. This novel has a story of woman and her husband in an Indian village who were exploited by money lenders.
‘Rukmani’ the lead female character of the Novel, is a rural Indian woman who did not receive, education, financial security, and societal support.
On the other hand the novel “Voices in the City” by ‘Anita Desai’ has stressed freedom and facing realities in the lives of Indian Women.
Depiction Of Women In the 21st Century
Indian Society has been going through several changes in establishing an identity for women. “The Binding Vine” a novel by ‘Shashi Deshpande’ has highlighted marital rape. Another contemporary author, ‘Shobha De’ has highlighted the emotional and sexual needs of an Indian middle-class woman through her story “Second Thoughts”.
Development of Feminism in West
The concept of Feminism Movement got proper prominence and importance in the 1960s. Earlier, Feminism was limited to some female writers but the increased number of Female writers and the representation of Women characters in the fiction world drew large attention in the Literature. The evolution of the feminist movement in Western literature is as follows:
First Wave Of Feminism
First-wave Feminism is mainly concerned with the treatment of women in a male-dominated society. The Major works that raised the issues of Feminism during this phase are Mary Ellman’s ‘Thinking about Women (1968), Kate Millet’s Sexual Politics, and Germaine Greer’s The Female Eunuch. Many important works of male writers have been studied in order to analyse the attitude of male towards women and society.
Second Wave Of Feminism
Second Wave is concerned with women’s writings including Ellen More’s Literary Women, Elaine Showalter’s, A Literature of Their Own, Nina Baym’s Women’s Fiction, Sandra Gilbert and Susan Gubar’s The Mad Woman in Attic, and Margaret Human’s Women Writers and Poetic Identity.
Elaine Showalter’s ‘A Literature of Their Own Published in 1970. This phase chiefly explores the relationship between females and literature and texts were analyzed to understand the treatment of female characters by the male in the society.
Showalter proposed three stages in the history of Women’s writing
Feminine Phase (1840-1880), in which women writers imitated dominant male artistic norms and aesthetic standards.
Feminist Phase (1880-1920), in which radical approach has been maintained and at last.
Female Phase (1920 to onwards), primarily focused on female writing focused on female writing and female experiences.
‘Mary Wollstonecraft’, one of the authors who wrote about Feminism, advocated in her ‘A Vindication of the Rights of Women that women must be treated equally because they have to play a crucial and vital role in society, especially in bringing up children.
She attacked male thinkers and scholars like Rousseau who argued that women did not need education but she supported education as a means of women’s improvement.
American activist, “Margaret Fuller” one of the famous female writers of the 19th century, in her Women in the Nineteenth Century, in her “Women in the Nineteenth Century” believed that education is the means of emancipation for women and her key planks are education, employment, and politics.
While in the 20th century ‘Virginia Woolf’ a modernist and Female Victorian author, explored gender reaction in her ‘A Room of One’s Own’ and ‘Three Guineas’. She remarks a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction. She advocates for the liberation of women, financial independence, and the right to reveal feelings and experiences through words.
Whereas ‘Simone De Beauvoir favors that there is no essence of the woman and that a woman is constructed by men. She states in her feminism manifesto of The Second Sex, ‘One is not born a woman but become one.’
Feminism questions the long-standing, dominant, male, interpretations and patriarchal attitude. Feminism has empowered the confidence of women and provided individuality identification in Patriarchal Society.
“The Dicing” and “The Sequel to the Dicing” set the background for the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharata. The Mahabharata originally written by Sage Veda Vyasa, is the largest epic in the world of Literature. It was first written in Sanskrit and later translated by many authors in English. It was composed between 300 BC & 300 AD. It has over 200,000 verse lines, 18 million words and it is believed that it is believed that it could have taken over 600 years to write. It is roughly four times the length of the Ramayana. It was first written by Lord Ganesha, at the request of Vyasa to write the tale as dictated by him.
The book is divided into a total of 18 chapters (Parva) Vyasa is written this epic in approx. 24,000 lines, under the title ‘Bharata’.
Important Characters of Mahabharata
Vyasa – Narrator of Mahabharata, father of Pandu & Dhritarashtra.
Bhisma Pitamaha (Ganga Putra)- Stepbrother of Vyasa, the grandfather of Pandavas and the Kauravas (100 brothers).
Pandu – Father of five Pandavas.
Kunti – Wife of Pandu and mother of five Pandavas & Karna.
Dhritarashtra – Born blind king of Hastinapur, father of Kauravas & Duryodhana.
Gandhari – Wife of Dhritarashtra, mother of Kauravas.
Yudhisthira – Eldest son of Kunti and rightful heir to the throne of Hastinapur.
Bhima – Second son of Kunti and Strongest of the Pandavas Brother.
Arjuna – The third son of Kunti, A Key warrior from Pandavas’ side who killed many warriors.
Nakul & Sahadeva – Pandavas twins brother.
Dropaudi – Wife of Five Pandavas.
Duryodhana – Eldest son of Dhritarashtra and Gandhari.
Dushsasana – Second Eldest son of Dhritarashtra & Gandhari.
Karana – Secret son of Kunti, a Great warrior, friend of Duryodhana.
Drona – Teacher of Pandavas & Kauravas.
Shakuni – Brother of Gandhari and maternal uncle of Kauravas, main villain of Mahabharata.
Krishna (The God) – Avatar of God Vishnu and Supporter of Pandavas.
The Book of The Assembly Hall
The Book of the Assembly Hall or A Sabha Parva is the pivotal one of the eighteen major books of Mahabharata. It is the second of eighteen books of Mahabharata. It has 10 parts and 81 chapters (9 parts and 72 Chapters). It starts with the description of the palace and assembly hall (Sabha) built by Maya at Indraprastha. It presents the glorious kingdom of Pandavas.
There are specifically ten sections in The Book of the Assembly Hall. It defines the principles of crime against humanity, where any unharmed human being must also stand up for any evil or injustice inflicted upon the society and people at large.
Introduction Of The Dicing
The Dicing or The Sequel to the Dicing are two subchapters from the second book, The Book of the Assembly Hall (Sabha Parva). This book is one of the books of Mahabharata written by Sage Veda Vyasa. Mahabharata is the largest epic in the world of literature. It was originally written in Sanskrit and later translated by many authors in English.
“The Dicing” and “The Sequel to the Dicing” set the background for the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharata.
Duryodhana convinces Dhritarastra to offer the Khandava forest to the Pandavas. Initially, it was a useless forest. Maya built a majestic assembly hall in the uncultivated land with his 8000 kinkara rakshasas in 14 days. The useless forest turns into a beautiful kingdom, Indraprastha.
The Defeat of the Jarasandha who defeated 84 kings, makes Yudhisthira the king of 85 kings. God Krishna suggests that Yudhisthira conduct Rajasuya to declare complete independence from Hastinapura and Celebrate the king’s glory. They invite Duryodhana to the ceremony with other guests. He is jealous to see the magnificent hall. The palace is a palace of illusions. As a result, Duryodhana mistakes a glass floor for a pool, and he falls into a pool Bhima, Arjuna, Draupadi, and other women laugh of him.
Duryodhana returns home with memories of humiliation. He is distressed and silent. Therefore, his maternal uncle, Shakuni, asks him the reason. Duryodhana reveals the fact that he is jealous of the wealth of the Pandavas and resents that they humiliate him. Shakuni reminds him that the Pandavas are invincible for defeating in war. However, there is one way to snatch their wealth. That is in the game of Dice.
Shakuni is a master of dicing. Duryodhana asks Dhritarashtra for approval. Dhritarashtra tries to convince his son to listen to the advice of Vidura. The king tells his son that despite having privileges, there is no point in feeling sad. Duryodhana begs his father to approve the game of dice so that Shakuni can take over their wealth.
Dhritarashtra leaves the decision to Vidhura because he wants to consult with Vidura in this regard. Duryodhana tells him that Vidhura is partial to the Pandavas and will never approve of it. He pressurizes his father to kill himself if it does not happen. Therefore Dhritarastra orders Vidura to invite Yudhisthira to enjoy a family dicing game. Vidhura forbids the king’s proposal because he foresees that this would lead to destruction. Despite his advice, Dhritarashtra orders him to invite the Pandavas to the game.
Vidura reaches Indraprastha and gives the news of the king. Yudhisthira agrees because it is the king’s order. Yudhisthira soon prepares to go to Hastinapur. The Game starts the next day. Shakuni welcomes Yudhisthira to play dice with him. Yudhisthira warns him not to use any trickery in the game. Duryodhana says that Shakuni will play on his behalf. Bhisma, Drona, and others enter the Hall.
Yudhisthira stakes a hundred thousand gold pieces and loses. After that, he stakes his chariot, a thousand elephants, a hundred thousand male and female slaves, Gandharva horses, his army, and his treasury. Vidura tries to stop the game during the game but to no avail. Despite losing one after another, Yudhisthira keeps staking his people’s property. Nakula, Sahadeva, Arjuna, Bhisma with nothing in hand. Shakuni suggests that he should stake his wife, Draupadi. Everyone in the assembly is shocked to hear that. Unfortunately, he loses her too in the game.
Duryodhana orders Vidura to bring Draupadi to the hall, but Vidhura denies his order. He tells Dushasana to bring her. Despite Draupadi’s protest, Dushasana drags her by her hair to the hall. Duryodhana asks Dushasana to strip the clothes from the Pandavas and Draupadi. The Pandavas strip off their upper clothes and sit silently.
Dushasana undresses Draupadi. Surprisingly, her clothes are replaced by similar clothes, this is God Krishna’s Grace to Draupadi. The more he tries to undress her the more clothes appear. At last, Dushasana is tired and gives up. Upon the insult of Draupadi, Bhima is in rage and swears that he will drink the blood of Dushasana. Duryodhana exposes his left there to Draupadi and Bhima swears to break his thigh.
At last, Draupadi complains about the lowness of the Kauravas. Dhritarashtra gives Draupadi two boons. For the first boon, she chooses the freedom of Yudhisthira, and for the second the liberty of the remaining brothers. In this way, Draupadi becomes the saviour of the Pandavas. Dhritarastra wishes Yudhishthira good luck and advises him not to ponder the insult they have faced in the hall. They leave the place and return to Indraprastha.
Thus, The Dicing scene is used as a metaphor for the struggle between good and evil. Yudhisthira represents Dharma or righteousness, while Duryodhana and Shakuni represent Adharma or Unrighteousness. In the end, Dharma triumphs, but only after a great deal of suffering.
It is also a reminder of the importance of women’s rights and dignity. Draupadi is a strong and courageous woman, but she is also a victim of male violence and misogyny. The scene is a reminder of the need to protect women and girls from all forms of violence.
“Gitanjali” is one of the best-known works of Rabindranath Tagore for which he received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. It is a collection of poems and another title of this collection is “The Song Offerings”. It explores the depths of the human spirit and its connection was published on August 1910, and comprised 157 songs. The English version was released in November 1912 by the India Society of London. It contained translations of 53 poems from the original Bengali Gitanjali, as well as 50 other poems from his drama Achalayantana & other books of poetry – mainly Gitimalya, Naivadya, and Kheya. It had a long introduction by the noted poet W. B. Yeats.
About Rabindranath Tagore
The poet of the ‘Gitanjali’ Rabindranath Tagore is a great poet, short story writer, singer, translator, social reformer, and philosopher in the modern history of Indian English Literature. It was Tagore who was introduced as the first Asian, who was awarded with Nobel Prize for his famous book ‘Gitanjali” in 1913. He wrote his first poem when he was only 8 years old.
Tagore also wrote the National Anthem of India in 1950, which is Jana, Gana, Mana………… He was referred to as “The Bard of Bengal”. He also wrote the Bangladesh Anthem and Founder of Santiniketan.
Themes Of Gitanjali
The main theme of Gitanjali is Mysticism. According to Indian Philosophy, mysticism is the highest stage where the human soul is in direct contact with God. A mystic thinks that the world we see with our eyes and ears is not real and that there is a more real-world behind if that can only be understood spiritually, not through the senses. Mysticism is not something that can be explained logically. All mystics try to separate themselves from the outside world and connect with the world inside. This type of mysticism is based on the ideas of renunciation, detachment from the world, and asceticism
Tagore was influenced by a lot of mystic writers such as – Walt Whitman, Kahil Gibran, and Sri Aurobindo. Still, Tagore’s version of mysticism is a little bit different from the others.
Gitanjali is God’s prayer. It is a collection of songs about God and praise for him, which was deeply rooted in the ancient tradition of Indian Vaishnava poetry and mystical, eternal, and sublime qualities. They have a wide range of moods and ways of doing things. The theme of God runs through the whole Gitanjali.
Gitanjali also has a theme about nature. It looks at the connection between God and nature. His lyrics stand out because of how beautiful and full of images they are. These images come from nature and Indian Mythology.
Gitanjali does not just talk about the relationship between a man’s soul and God. It also talks about the relationship between a man’s soul and God. It also talks about the relationship between a man’s soul and other men. It stands up for the rights of the poor and humble, who are often denied the most essential rights of man.
At the end of Gitanjali, Tagore also writes about death, and he does so in many different and artistic ways. He doesn’t fear death. Instead, he looks forward to it with joy because it’s the only way to be with God. He said,
“Death looks scary but it brings the soul of a person to a meeting with the eternal.”
There are many kinds of love in Gitanjali, including love for women, love for other people, love for humanity, love for God, love for beauty, and love for truth. Tagore is a poet who loves God and religion, and his poetry shows the world’s truth, happiness, and beauty. He wrote,
“Love is the only reality and it is eternal. All else is maya, illusion.”
Tagore’s philosophy of life in Gitanjali
Tagore’s Gitanjali is a collection of poems that reflects his personal philosophy of life. It is a deeply spiritual work that celebrates the beauty of the world and the unity of all beings. Tagore believed that we should live our lives in harmony with nature. He saw nature as a manifestation of the divine and he believed that we can learn to connect with God through our appreciation of the natural world. He wrote,
“Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where the knowledge is free; Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depth of truth.”
Tagore’s philosophy of life is also reflected in his emphasis on the importance of compassion and service to others. He believed that we should all strive to make the world a better place for everyone. He wrote:
“I shall never be afraid to ask for blessing, and I shall never feel ashamed to beg for love.”
In the modern days of nihilism and despair the poems in ‘Gitanjali’ offer a kind of ‘faith and optimism’. Man can get rid of all kinds of despair and suffering, if he sacrifices himself to God. God will then carry his burden of life. The poet says this in his song.
“Leave all thy burden on his hands who can bear all, and never look behind I regret.”
Humanization of the divine is one of the significant aspects of Tagore’s poetry. God is presented as existing among the simple, poor, and humble people. So to ignore them is to ignore God. For example
“Here is thy footstool and there rest thy feet where live the poorest and lowliest and lost.”
Tagore uses a wide range of vivid and picturesque images and symbols that are drawn from everyday life as well as from age-old myths. For example –
“This little flute of a reed thou host carried over hills and dales, and host breathed through eternally new”
Human existence is compared to a flute through which God creates a new Melody.
Material desires and ego are the main barriers in the path towards God. Man is chained by shackles of desire and ego. Until and unless he sacrifices his desires, he cannot have a glimpse of God. In the song No IX, the poet says:
“Thy desire at once put out the light from the lamp it touches with its breath.”
“Gitanjali” is a masterpiece that explores the depths of the human soul, the mysteries of the universe, and the quest for transcendence. Tagore’s poetic brilliance, combined with his profound spirituality, love, and human experience, has created a work that continues to inspire and resonate with readers worldwide. The collection’s translation into various languages further spread its influence, cementing Tagore’s reputation as a poet of global significance.
Thus, “Gitanjali” stands as a testament to the power of poetry to transcend boundaries and illuminate the timeless truths of human conditions.
Fiction is a form of literary art that is invented or imagined by the author. It is a type of storytelling that can be presented in various forms such as novels, short stories, novellas, and flash fiction. Unlike non-fiction, which deals with factual events and real people, fiction is created from the author’s imagination, allowing them to explore different themes and subjects without the constraints of reality.
Fiction is an essential part of literature, and it has the power to transport readers to different places and times, explore the complexities of human emotions, and challenge their beliefs and perceptions. It can be both entertaining and thought-provoking, and it often serves as a medium to reflect on the world around us and question our values and beliefs.
Method Of Teaching Fiction
Teaching fiction in literature is a fascinating and rewarding task for any educator. Fictional literature includes novels, short stories, and other forms of storytelling that engage readers in a world of imagination. A skilled teacher can help students develop critical thinking skills and foster a love of reading through effective teaching methods.
There are various methods of teaching fiction in literature and their benefits for students.
Teaching fiction is through close reading
This approach involves reading the text closely and analyzing its language, structure, and themes. It encourages students to pay attention to detail and to think critically about the author’s message. By asking students to identify literary elements such as characterization, point of view, and symbolism, teachers can guide them toward a deeper understanding of the story. Close reading also allows for classroom discussion and encourages students to share their own interpretations of the text.
Teaching fiction is through Creative Writing Exercises
This approach encourages students to engage with the story on a personal level and to explore their own creativity. Teachers can ask students to write a short story or a character analysis based on the text they have read. This approach allows students to develop their writing skills and to gain a deeper understanding of the story by applying their own creative interpretation.
Teaching fiction is through Role-playing
This approach allows students to act out scenes from the story, bringing the characters to life and encouraging students to think critically about their motivations and actions. Role-playing also encourages students to work collaboratively and to develop empathy and understanding for the characters.
This method involves a study of the characters in the text. Students can be taught to analyze the characters’ motivations, relationships, and conflicts. This method can help students to understand the complexity of human behavior and the nuances of character development.
This method involves a comparison of the text with other works of literature or with other forms of media, such as films or television shows. This method can help students to see the connections and influences between different works of art.
Teaching fiction is through Literary analysis essays
This approach involves asking students to analyze the text in-depth, identifying literary elements, and examining their significance. By asking students to write literary analysis essays, teachers can help students develop critical thinking skills and to gain a deeper understanding of the story.
Using multimedia tools such as films, graphic novels, and audiobooks is another effective method of teaching fiction in literature
These tools can help students engage with the story in a new way and can help visual learners understand the story better. By using multimedia tools, teachers can make the story come alive for their students and encourage them to think critically about the author’s message.
Fiction is a powerful and versatile form of storytelling that offers a unique way to explore the world and the human experience through the creative vision of the author.
Thus, we can say that there are several effective methods of teaching fiction in literature, each with its own benefits for students. Close reading, creative writing exercises, role-playing, literary analysis essays, and multimedia tools are all useful approaches for engaging students with fictional literature. By using these methods, teachers can help students develop critical thinking skills, foster a love of reading, and gain a deeper understanding of the stories they read.
Teaching Method Of Drama
Teaching drama in literature requires a unique set of skills that go beyond the traditional lecture format. The goal is not only to convey the content of the play but also to engage students in a way that allows them to experience the play as active participants.
Drama is a literary form that is meant to be performed on stage, film, or television. It is a collaborative art form that involves actors, directors, designers, and writers. Drama is different from other literary forms because it is meant to be experienced rather than simply read.
Method of Teaching Drama in Literature
Experiencing the Play
The first step in teaching drama is to create an environment that allows students to experience the play. This can be accomplished through live performances, screenings, or even reading the play aloud in class. Encourage students to participate in the performance by having them read parts of the script or by assigning them to create their own performances.
Analysis Of Drama
After experiencing the play, it is important to analyze it in detail. This includes examining the plot, characters, themes, and symbols. Encourage students to ask questions and explore their own interpretations of the play. Use discussion groups and writing assignments to help students delve deeper into the text.
Historical Background and Cultural Context
Drama is often influenced by the historical background and cultural context in which it was written. Discussing the context of the play can provide valuable insights into the themes and issues that the play addresses. Encourage students to research the historical background and cultural background of the play and to incorporate this research into their analysis.
Role-playing is an effective way to engage students in the drama. Assign students to create their own scenes or monologues based on the characters in the play. This not only encourages creativity but also helps students to understand the motivations and actions of the characters.
Performance and Production
Finally, encourage students to produce their own performances of the play. This can be done through staged readings, video productions, or even full-scale productions. Allow students to take on roles such as director, actor, set designer, and lighting designer to create a fully-realized production.
Teaching drama in literature requires a combination of theoretical analysis and practical experience. By creating an environment that allows students to experience the play, analyze the text in detail, discuss the historical and cultural context, encourage role-playing, and produce their own performances, students can gain a deep understanding and appreciation of drama as a literary form.
“Feminism” is an Ideology that demands equal rights for men and women in terms of politics decision-making, career, and having Children. It is considered a struggle to achieve the same rights, opportunities, and dignity as men have in society.
“The Dicing” and “The Sequel to the Dicing” set the background for the Kurukshetra war in the Mahabharata. The Mahabharata originally written by Sage Veda Vyasa, is the largest epic in the world of Literature.
The Book “Gulliver’s Travels” was written by Johnathan Swift, who is known as a great Anglo Irish Satirist, essayist, and poet of English Literature. The full title of ‘Gulliver’s Travel’ is ‘Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World
“Man and Superman” by George Bernard Shaw is regarded as a philosophical play due to its exploration of several philosophical themes. It was first published in 1903. The play is subtitled “A Comedy and a Philosophy”
“Now I Remain for Myself” is a collection of Marathi poems written by Bahinabai Chaudhari, a prominent Indian poetess who comes from the state of Maharashtra. Originally composed in the late 19th century, Chaudhari’s verses beautifully express her personal experiences, emotions, and reflections on various aspects of life.
Bahinabai’s poems reflect her life experiences, her observations of nature, her love for her land and culture, and her wisdom and philosophy. She wrote about the joys and sorrows of a farmer’s life, the festivals and rituals of Maharashtra, the beauty and bounty of nature, and the spiritual quest for self-realization. Her poems are simple, spontaneous, lyrical, and profound. They have a universal appeal and resonate with the common people.
One of her most famous poems is “Now I Remain for Myself” (मी आता माझ्यासाठी राहिले), which expresses her sense of liberation and detachment after losing her husband and children. The poem is written in the first person and has four stanzas of four lines each. The poem has a regular rhyme scheme of abcb in each stanza.
About Bahinbai Chaudhari
Bahinabai Chaudhari was born into a poor and illiterate family of farmers. She was married at the age of 13 to Nathuji Khanderao Chaudhari, who was also a farmer and a poet. She had four sons and two daughters, but only one son survived. Her husband died when she was 30 years old, leaving her alone to manage the farm and the household.
Bahinabai Chaudhari learned to read and write from her husband, who encouraged her to compose poems. She wrote about her daily life, her joys and sorrows, her love and devotion for her husband, her struggles and hardships as a farmer, and her observations of nature and society. She also wrote about her spiritual beliefs and her devotion to Lord Vitthal, a form of Vishnu worshipped by the Varkari sect.
Bahinabai Chaudhari’s poems were not written down by herself but were memorized and recited by her son Madhusudan, who later published them in various magazines and books. Her poems became popular among the masses as well as the literary circles, and she received recognition and appreciation from eminent writers and critics such as N.C. Kelkar, V.S. Khandekar, P.K. Atre, and Sane Guruji.
Themes Of Now I Remain For Myself
Nature and Rural Life
Chaudhari’s poems often celebrate the beauty of nature and capture the essence of rural life. She vividly describes the changing seasons, the agricultural activities, and the natural elements surrounding her, reflecting a deep connection to the land and its rhythms.
Chaudhari’s poetry portrays women’s experiences, emotions, and struggles in a patriarchal society. She addresses themes such as love, marriage, motherhood, and societal expectations, offering a glimpse into the complex inner world of women during her era.
Spirituality and Devotion
Deeply religious, Chaudhari’s verses frequently convey her devotion to the divine. She explores faith, spirituality, and the pursuit of inner peace, infusing her work with a sense of spiritual transcendence.
Summary Of Now I Remain For Myself
The poem begins with the speaker lamenting the loss of her husband, who was her companion and support in life. She feels like a bird whose nest has been destroyed by a storm. She wonders how she will survive without him, who will take care of her, and who will share her joys and sorrows. She feels like she has lost everything and has no purpose in life.
In the first stanza, the speaker says that she has now remained for herself after losing her husband and children. She says that she has no one to call her own or to care for her. She says that she has become free from all worldly attachments and expectations.
In the second stanza, the speaker says that she has now become indifferent to praise or blame, happiness or sorrow, honor or dishonor. She says that she has transcended all dualities and distinctions. She says that she has attained a state of peace and equanimity.
In the third stanza, the speaker says that she has now realized her true self, which is beyond birth and death, name and form, time and space. She says that she has merged with the supreme reality, which is eternal, blissful, and pure. She says that she has become one with God.
In the fourth stanza, the speaker says she has become free from all desires and fears. She says that she has no need for anything or anyone. She says that she has reached the ultimate goal of life.
Analysis Of Now I Remain For Myself
The poem is a remarkable expression of the poet’s spiritual journey from grief to liberation. The poem shows how the poet transformed her suffering into an opportunity for self-discovery and enlightenment. The verse also shows how the poet embraced the philosophy of Vedanta, which teaches that the true self is identical to Brahman, the supreme reality.
The poem uses simple words and images to convey profound truths. The poet uses metaphors such as “the world’s net” (जगाचा जाळा) to describe the bondage of worldly attachments, “the sky’s limit” (आकाशाचा थोर) to describe the transcendence of time and space, and “the ocean’s shore” (समुद्राचा किनारा) to describe the attainment of bliss and peace.
The poem also uses repetition to emphasize the poet’s transformation. The phrase “now I remain for myself” (मी आता माझ्यासाठी राहिले) is repeated at the beginning of each stanza to mark the contrast between her past and present state. The phrase “now I have” (मला आता) is repeated at the end of each line in the third stanza to show her realization of her true self.
She concludes the poem by saying that now she remains for herself, but not in a selfish or egotistic way. She says that she remains for herself as a part of the whole creation, as a drop of water in the ocean, as a ray of light in the sun, as a flower in the garden. She says that she remains for herself as an expression of God’s beauty and bliss.
The poem is also notable for its feminist perspective that challenges the patriarchal norms and values of Indian society. Bahinabai Chaudhari expresses her autonomy and agency as a woman who has survived many hardships and oppressions. She rejects the roles and duties that are imposed on women by men and society. She claims her right to live according to her own will and desire. She affirms her dignity and worth as a human being who has a unique identity and voice.
The poem is a powerful testimony of Bahinabai Chaudhari‘s courage, wisdom, and spirituality. It shows how she overcame her grief and suffering by finding meaning and joy in herself and in God. It shows how she challenged the norms and expectations of society by asserting her individuality and freedom. It shows how she celebrated her womanhood and humanity by embracing her nature and spirit. The poem is also an inspiration for women who seek to assert their individuality and freedom in a male-dominated world.
“The poem is also an inspiration for anyone who seeks to overcome suffering and find meaning in life.“
Poem Short Version
Now I remain for myself, No one to blame or praise, No one to love or hate, No one to please or displease.
I am my own master, I am my own guide, I am my own friend, I am my own judge.
I am free to choose my own path, I am free to follow my own dreams, I am free to be myself.