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1 Abstract: Rabindranath Tagore was a versatile personality who dominated the literary world till he was alive. Besides being a first-rate writer, musician, theatre thespian, educationist, philosopher, humanist and an administrator, he was above all a patriot. To this date he remains the maiden Indian recipient of Nobel Award for Literature. His Gitanjali won him this international recognition in As a man of letters, he was par excellence. He tried and succeeded in all forms of writing, both fictional and non-fictional. He was a poet, dramatist, novelist, short story writer, scriptwriter and an essayist too. Though his fame rests on his poetical works, he was a prolific playwright too. Chapter I: Introduction to Indian Drama. The first chapter of the research topic deals with survey of the Indian English Drama. In this chapter the brief history of Indian English Drama is surveyed. It shows the rich and colourful tradition of drama in India since the Vedic period to Sanskrit drama. The beginning of drama in Vedic periods from the ancient times to Sanskrit drama and from preindependence drama to post-independence and till contemporary drama. It contains brief chronology of regional drama too. In this chapter, the research scholar has given the chronological growth of drama from Bharatmuni's "Natyashastra" to the contemporary dramatist. The chapter contains information about the characteristics of the hero or Neta of the drama. It also informs about the Rasas and emotions known as Navrasas given by Bharatmuni. The chronological study of Sanskrit drama of Kalidasa, Bhasa, Bhavbhuti is shown in the present chapter. It also gives information about the structure of Sanskrit drama and the Sutradhara. The chapter also has information about the growth of Indian folk drama. It also includes the development of Indian regional drama, the emergence and growth of drama in every state of India. It's structure and their recognition in every state. It has shown the disappearance of the drama during Mughal period and again it's rise in the British rule. After the rise of regional drama and the British rule there started the tradition of Indian English drama. The chapter has shown chronological and conceptual growth of English drama in India. The plays of the beginning period were of mythological themes. The pre-independence drama deals with

2 the social issues related to independence movement later on it's concepts changed to social issues like feminism, industrialisation etc. The chapter shows in brief the chronology of English drama from the first English drama in India of Madhusudan Michael Dutt's "Is This Called Civilization" in 1871 to Aurobindo's Savitri, Tegore's mythical and legendry plays. T.P. Kailasam to A.S.P. Ayyer and Harindranath Chattopadhyaya. Chapter II: Rabindranath Tagore and His Contribution to Indian Writing in English This chapter is an honest attempt to highlight Tagore's dramatic output. In this chapter there is a biographical sketch of Rabindranth Tagore, his family background. It has depicted his versatile personality as a writer, painter, musician, theatre thespian, educationist, philosopher, humanist and an administrator. It gives the graph of growth of Rabindranath Tagore as a writer. Rabindranath Tagore the well-educated and well cultured personality of India. He is the first Asian to win the Nobel Prize for literature. The chapter gives the historical, social background of the era in which Rabindranath Tagore born & brought up. It's effect on his thinking and writing. It's impression on the mind of Rabindranath Tagore. As a writer Rabindranath Tagore has practiced every genre of literature. He had perfectly and artistically tried in poetry, novels, short stories, essay, drama and miscellany. The chapter shows detailed study of Tagore as a literary person. There is a description of Tagore as a novelist and short story writer, as an essayist, as a dramatist. The chapter includes the categorical divisions of Tagore's plays as well as his contribution in the dramatic devices like music, stage, actor etc. Tagore was not only the playwright but he also had shown his talent as a stage director, music director, painter. The chapter has thematic summarization of his plays. His plays shows humanity and spirituality in it. Rabindranath Tagore has depicted woman as a human being in almost his all plays. His many plays deal with mythical and legendry themes. His plays shows every person as a human being whether it is a King or a Queen or Chandal girl. He has presented the mythical figures too as a person having human emotion and fear of society.

3 The chapter has shown Rabindranath Tagore's literary career in chronological order and his contribution to Indian English writing specially to Indian English Drama. Chapter III: Assertion of female self in his Mythical Plays The study has divided Rabindranath Tagore's plays in mythical and legendry plays. The present chapter deals with mythical plays. The plays selected in this chapter are Chitra, Gandhari's Prayer and Karna and Kunti. The chapter gives various definitions of myth by the various authors and thinkers. It has given the survey of mythical plays written by various writers like Aurobindo and others. The chapter has included the study of characters from the above said plays. Rabindranath Tagore is the most important playwright who used myth in his plays successfully. Here is a description of many of his mythical plays. He has used myths from Ramayana, Mahabharata, Vishnupurana and other myths. The chapter studies the assertions of female self in Chitra, Gandhari's Prayer and Karna and Kunti. In this plays he has depicted woman as a human being. Chitra is an exposition of feminism. He has depicted Chitra as a woman who proves herself as a companion of Arjuna. She stands a modern new woman who strives for her own image as a self-reliant personality. The chapter studies another mythical play by Rabindranath Tagore is Gandhari's prayer. In this play too Tagore has used the myth from Mahabharata. IN this play too Tagore has depicted the strong and firm character of Gandhari, who can't do injustice towards Pandwa's for the sake of her own son's love. She tries to stop her son Duryodhana from his misdeed and misbehaviour. Though she had forced herself to be blind, but she had not closed her inner eyes, her inner soul was not blind. She is the mother as well as the queen mother for whom her subject is like her own son. Here she strongly opposed to her own son & husband for justice. The third mythical play understudy is Karna and a Kunti. It too is myth from Mahabharata related to Karna's birth. In this play Tagore has depicted mother and son relationship. In this play Tagore has depicted Kunti as a woman and a mother who for the fear of society has abandoned her own son. After recognizing Karna as her own son she can't stop herself from meeting him.

4 The chapter shows the equal thread of womanhood in all these three plays. In all these three plays the protagonists are woman who for the justice rises themselves as a human being. Chapter IV: Assertion of Female Self in his Legendary Plays This chapter deals with the study of female self in legendry plays. Tagore was deeply influenced by Buddhism. He was born in a period of revival of non-violence told and taught by Lord Buddha. Tagore's family was too impressed by Buddhism. The chapter has included the historical background of the era in which Rabindranath Tagore lived. The chapter has shown influence of Buddhism and it's message of love and forgiveness on Rabindranath Tagore. He was impressed by the human side of Buddha's personality. Buddhist literature has a permanent trace on him. The chapter gives thematically summarization of his legendary plays. Tagore has studied many Buddhist legends and found one common thing that is Buddhism has given identity and awakened the self of downtrodden persons of the society. As per Buddhism every person is equal and same to the nature so he should be treated equally by human being too. Tagore has adopted many Buddhist legends for his plays like Malini, Chandalika,Natirpuja, Mukta Dhara, Sacrifice, Red oleanders etc. Presented study has selected his Chandalika and Natir Puja as a legendry plays. The plays understudy has it's protagonists Prakriti and Srimati, the downtrodden girls who are neglected and ignored by the society. The plays Chandalika gives the journey of a Chandal a girl as an awakened woman who for her self-desire follows the wrong ways but again she awakens her soul and intellect and reaches to the boundary of noble spirited human being. Another play understudy is the story of a Nati a dancing girl, Srimati who at the cost of her life lights the lamps at the stupa. Here too Tagore has depicted the crisis between the mother and queen mother. Srimati is a slave girl who is a dancer at the court of the King. She gets the chance to lit the lamps at the Stupa because of her own qualities. She performs her duty by accepting the death. It makes her immortal in the history.

5 This chapter shows how these common and downtrodden, untouchable girls became immortal and legendry figures by their dedication and self less service. Here Tagore has not shown them as a woman only but he depicted them as a woman who can raise questions for their own identity. Chapter V: Conclusion This is concluding the chapter. Here the scholar has concluded his study on the topic. It includes the study of Tagore as the dramatist. It also has thrown light on Tagore's Nobel wining Gitanjali The present chapter has reviewed all the four previous chapters. It deals with the relevance of the study of Tagore's plays on the perspective of female characters. He is the first Indian writer who had depicted Indian woman as a human being. He had shown them not as a meek, dumb and humble but has presented them with a new and intellectual personality. His heroines are as equal as his hero's are. The chapter comparatively shows how these plays have shown his heroines as strong and much bold woman who may deny the social bindings to get their goals. The chapter has a comparison between all his heroines understudy. It also has shown how Rabindranath Tagore has portrayed the image of a new woman before hundred years from today when the woman was considered as a slave of the man. After independence there came a drastic change in the status of a woman. She is supposed equal to man. She started to perform all her duties as his companion she got her own identity. She is ready to do any sacrifice to get her aim as the heroines of Rabindranath Tagoer's plays. He had depicted these figures before hundred years but they seems like today's woman, eager to get her identity, her respect, ready to work hard for her aim and goal. The picture of a woman depicted by him before hundred years is coming in reality today.

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