A play By Nishi Chawla
In a male-dominated society that expected women to obey several unwritten rules of decorum, a woman who chose to speak her mind and not abide by such standards would certainly be considered revolutionary and defiant. Kasturba, the wife of the famous Mahatma Gandhi, clearly fits this outline. She is not as well known to the modern world as her famous husband. It is not known that the concept of 'Satyagraha' was given to Gandhi by his wife. It is not known that Gandhi would have serious arguments and fights with his wife, Kasturba, who was always known as a demure and obedient wife. Kasturba acted entirely of her own accord, and she was not willing to agree to a situation simply because society dictated it to be proper. Kasturba was unwilling to compromise her own beliefs in order to please the populace. She also acted in unprecedented ways, not only for women, but for people in general. Most women would simply accept their husband's word and obey their wishes. However, Kasturba would not relinquish her own values to please society. Her progressive behavior was certainly unheard of in the nineteenth century! I think that she is in some ways prototypical of the age, though she also breaks free of the typical nineteenth century woman in that she has a number of the classical signs of being an uneducated girl from Gujarat, India, and from a well-to-do family. It is Nishi Chawla’s aim to make this play a deeply feminist text where Kasturba is revealed as a woman ahead of her times. Kasturba cared deeply for women's rights as well as her own rights as a woman.
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