© 2016

Hinduism and Hindi Theater


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Diana Dimitrova
    Pages 1-6
  3. Diana Dimitrova
    Pages 31-61
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 159-215

About this book


 This book explores the representation of Hinduism through myth and discourse in urban Hindi theatre in the period 1880-1960. It discusses representative works of seven influential playwrights and looks into the ways they have imagined and re-imagined  Hindu traditions. Diana Dimitrova examines the intersections of Hinduism and Hindi theatre, emphasizing the important role that both myth and discourse play in the representation of Hindu traditions in the works of Bharatendu Harishcandra, Jayshankar Prasad, Lakshminarayan Mishra, Jagdishcandra Mathur, Bhuvaneshvar, Upendranath Ashk, and Mohan Rakesh. Dimitrova’a analysis suggests either a traditionalist or a more modernist stance toward religious issues. She emphasizes the absence of Hindi-speaking authors who deal with issues implicit to the Muslim or Sikh or Jain, etc. traditions. This prompts her to suggest that Hindi theatre of the period 1880-1960, as represented in the works of the seven dramatists discussed, should be seen as truly ‘Hindu-Hindi’ theatre. 


Hinduism Hindi theatre Hindi Hindi literature South Asia South Asian studies South Asian religious traditions Religion

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.University of MontrealMontrealCanada

About the authors

 Diana Dimitrova is Associate Professor of Hinduism and South Asian religions at the University of Montreal, Canada. She is the author of Western Tradition and Naturalistic Hindi Theatre (2004) and Gender, Religion and Modern Hindi Drama (2008). She is also the editor of Religion in Literature and Film in South Asia (2010) and The Other in South Asian Religion, Literature and Film: Perspectives on Otherism and Otherness (2014). 

Bibliographic information


“Hinduism and Hindi Theater provides a valuable introduction to the work of seven Hindi playwrights and contributes to our thinking about how their work exploits and feeds into discourses concerning the representation of Hindu religious and cultural motifs, especially those concerning the roles and status of women.” (Mikel Burley, Reading Religion,, October, 2017)