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Title: From Political Obligation to Social Emancipation: A Reading of Imtiaz Ali’s Anarkali
Authors: Singh, Vivek
Keywords: Anarkali
Issue Date: 27-Feb-2022
Publisher: Registrar, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore.
Series/Report no.: Journal of the Department of English. Vol. 15 2022;
Abstract: The paper aims to examine the issues related to the obligation that can lead to conflicts. All of us are duty-bound to follow social norms, adhere to promises and obey laws, which are also the prerequisites to justice. However, people also have grounds to not believe in the ‘rightness’ of the rules. The famous Urdu historical drama Anarkali (1922) by Syed Imtiaz Ali Taj, later translated in English by Zulfiqar Ali, contradicts the popular notion of justice. Voices imbued within the play defy the political ‘laws’ and plead for reordering the normative social structure. The play also interrogates repressive colonial ideology engaging with fear and amnesia of people who surrender their agency in the name of Order and Laws. The play deals with authority, power, anarchy, and universalizing notion of justice. The key questions that the paper seeks to address are: a) On what grounds does this justice rest? b) Why is political obligation necessitated, and how does it clash with individuals’ notion of liberty? c) How can we navigate the individual will with the power of authority? Further, the paper also attempts to explore and explain some of the peculiarities of how social democracy was conceived.
ISSN: 0973-3671
Appears in Collections:Journal of the Department of English - Vol 15 [2022]

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