Indian Stage, 4 Vols. in 2
The Path of the Tamil Saints

By Hemendra Nath Das Gupta
September 2002
Reprint of the 1944-46 edition
Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers
ISBN: 81-215-1062-7
1,229 pages, 5 3/4" x 8 3/4"
$117.50 hardcover set

The stage constitutes a very important chapter in the social and political history of a people and the blend of the national genius can't be fully comprehended without its study. A puritan may look askance at the play-house, but its influence over the mass can't be ignored, and it is no exaggeration to say that a "nation is known only by its theatre."

One can know more about Greek character from their immortal plays than from the pages of a formal history. Likewise the Mricchakatika or the "Toy-cart" gives us a more graphic picture of the ancient Indian society than any other treatise of that time. From the pure standpoint of art, dramas and the stange have an ethical and historical value of their own.

Bengali drama, like Bengali language, has its origin in the remote past, but like many other modern institutions of the country, is an adoption after the western ideal, and the modern Bengali stage was, in fact, first founded in imitation of the early English theatre of Kolkata. Still the spirit of a Bengali drama is essentially eastern, and some of the present techniques of the Bengali stage can't be fully understood without a study of Sanskrit drama and the ancient Indian stage.


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