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BEGE-107: Understanding Drama (Formerly EEG-7)

BEGE-107: Understanding Drama (Formerly EEG-7)

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2021-22

If you are looking for BEGE-107 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Understanding Drama (Formerly EEG-7), you have come to the right place. BEGE-107 solution on this page applies to 2021-22 session students studying in BDP courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Code: BEGE-107/ASST/TMA/2021-22

Course Code: BEGE-107

Assignment Name: Understanding Drama

Year: 2021-2022

Verification Status: Verified by Professor


Attempt all questions.


Q 1) Write short notes on: 5 x 4=20


Q  a) Tamasha

Ans) Tamasha and bhavai are similar in many ways. It's popular in Maharashtra, and Glzashiralir Kotwal has elements of it. These productions are based on love stories and chivalry tales that are told through dance and music. Although these are primarily musical plays, prose dialogues are also used to make social and political statements.


These are performed by roving troupes of men and women, and the sound of their music draws large crowds to the performance location. While women do participate in a 'tamasha,' they are usually not allowed to witness it because of the freely used abusive language.


 Q b) Apron Stage

Ans) The apron, a vestigial platform that stood in front of the proscenium arch and accommodated most of the acting, was known as the vestigial platform. Long speeches were written into the plays on a regular basis, with rhetorical embellishments and no asides or soliloquies. The Elizabethan theatre had a capacity of 2,000 people, and the audience was diverse. Because they tried to appeal to as wide an audience as possible, plays of the period typically combine various subject matters and modes.


After the middle of the nineteenth century, the apron was cut down and eventually discarded entirely. The actor became disproportionately tall, and the painted scenery appeared false once he began to play close to the scenery within the setting, as was customary. The illusion on stage had deteriorated.


Q c) Mystery Plays

Ans) The stories in the Mystery plays were based on biblical accounts, whereas Miracles featured stories about events in the lives of martyrs and saints. These Mysteries or Miracles plays were originally written in Latin.


In the fourteenth century, the Miracle and Mystery plays grew in popularity. The Morality Plays are the next stage in the history of English drama. Miracle and Mystery plays spawned the Morality play. Morality playwrights had more leeway than Miracle and Mystery playwrights, who were required to follow a specific sequence of events from the Bible or popular legend.


Q d) Melodrama

Ans) The play is a one-act melodrama. Originally used to describe musical plays, such as opera. Flat types are the protagonists. Here, improbable events and sensational action are used to create drama. The plot is driven by action throughout a series of adventures. It thrives on adrenaline rushes. There's a lot of action, suspense, and rescues in this movie.


The conflict is on the outside, and everything is black or white. Melodrama appears to deal with serious subjects, but this is merely a ruse. The majority of serious dramas never reach tragedy's pinnacle, and thus become melodramas.


Q 2) Comment on the dramatic structure of The Trial of Dedan Kimathi. 20

Ans) He chronicles the pre-colonial struggle against European intrusion and slavery, as well as the anti-colonial struggle for democracy and the post-independence struggle against neocolonialism, in his novel "The Trail of Dedan Kimathi." This play focuses on peasant and worker struggles before and after Constitutional Independence. The play "is not a re-enactment of Nyeri's farcical trial," but rather an imaginative recreation and interpretation of Kenyan peasants' and workers' collective will in their resistance to six years of colonial torture and ruthless oppression by the British ruling classes, as well as their ongoing determination to resist exploitation, oppression, discrimination, colonialism, and neo-colonialism.


Dramatic structure

The authors use a variety of techniques and devices that are not commonly seen in theatre. The play is divided into an opening, three movements, and fourteen scenes, rather than the usual Acts and Scenes, which are numbered and referred to as Act I Scene 2 and so on. G.D. They are referred to as "characteristics of the non-naturalistic theatre" by Killam.

"Note that the peasants singing should also enact the flashback of Black people History that follows the song." (p.4)


Again, the Second Movement, Court scene, the stage directions state, among others, "As the -4fr.icans enter; it should be a study in contrast with their torn clothes and tattered shoes ... In the court, blacks and whites sit on separate sides. It is as if a huge gulf lies between them." (p.23)


In the Third Movement, the scene involving the Woman, the Boy and Girl, has the

following as stage directions:

“They move a little way off Both Girl and Boy sit at the feet of the woman. It should be symbolic: the woman now represents all the working mothers talking to their children." (p.59)


These stage notes show very clearly that the authors want the characters to communicate their 'message' most appropriately. The play also makes use of related audio-visual devices like mime, dancing, drumming, singing, music, sudden blackouts and changes in light effects.


In the First Movement, for instance, while 'Loud singing by a crowd of peasants' is going on, in the background 'the Black people's History is being enacted on the stage:


"Phase I: An exchange between a rich-looking black chief and a white hungry looking slave trader. Several strong black men and a few women are given away for a long, posh piece of cloth and a heap of trinkets. Bereaved relations and children weep, throwing themselves onto the ground, while other raise closed fists in a threatening manner.


Phase II: A chain of exhausted slaves, roped onto one anchor, dreg themselves through the auditorium, carrying heavy burdens, ending up on the stage. They row a boat across the stage, under heavy whipping.


Phase III: A labour force of black, toiling on a plantation under the supervision of a cruel, ruthless fellow black overseer. A white master comes around and inspects the work.


Phase IV An angry procession of defiant blacks, chanting anti-imperialist slogans through songs and thunderous shouts:

LEADER: Away with oppression!

Unchain the people!

CROWD: Away with oppression!

Unchain the people!


FEW VOICES: Uhuruuuuuuu-uu!" (pp.4-5)

During the Second Trial of Kimathi, When Kimathi recalls the glorious pre-colonial past of various Kenyan ethnic groups, the Mime in the background shows "the Groups of dancers, performing a sequence of dances by different peoples of Kenya take up the arena in turns. Each group dances its part and then walks right across the stage and stands aside." (p.37)


The purpose behind the mime is to show not only a composite cultural identity of Kenyans but, more importantly, coexistence and cultural cooperation among members of various ethnic groups in Kenya. Again, when during the same trial, the Banker refers to the financing of the building of the railways in Kenya, a Mime shows "Coolies and Swahilis building the Railway. They are driven away by Nandi warriors led by Koitalel." (p.39)


The purpose of showing this Mime is to recall that the resistance to colonial forces is not something new but it goes back to the times when the railways was being built and that the people of Kenya had understood the colonial designs of economic exploitation from the very beginning.


In fact, these devices together with their worldview - expressed through various characters - is what the authors 'believe' 'good theatre' is - "that which is on the side of the people, that which, without masking mistakes and weaknesses gives people courage and urges them to higher resolves in their struggle for total liberation."


Q 3) Examine the central issue projected by Mohan Rakesh in the play Halfway House. 20

Ans) Halfway House by Mohan Rakesh (Drama, Contemporary Indian Literature) can be seen as an exploration of meaning and identity in the midst of changing social and familial structures. Although the play's primary concern is to construct the search for identity as a universal non-gendered experience within the unfulfilling, incomplete nature of bourgeois existence along Existential lines, it eventually deals with many questions on a broader socio-economic context along Realist lines.


The character of Savitri, who seeks fulfilment and reason in marital bliss – “Why does one get married?” – epitomises the search for identity and meaning in Halfway House. Savitri seeks marital happiness beyond conjugal relations in men who possess the qualities she had always aspired for in Mahendranath, in order to fulfil a inner....void, if you will; to be self-sufficient.... complete.” Although the concept of Savitri seeking meaning in life through her relationships with men appears to be problematic in and of itself, the play tries to fool us into thinking that this is nothing more than an existentialist search for meaning in life. Juneja's power, wealth, and sense of reason are said to have overwhelmed her. Savitri goes from one man to the next, looking for the ideal partner. By denying Savitri the happiness she seeks and making her realise that all men, in Kirti Jain's words, "want to evade responsibility and to exploit her," the play attempts to portray this search as an illusion, an Absurdist attempt. The economic crisis and his loss of identity as the family's breadwinner had turned him into a non-entity, negatively affecting his mind and heart: "......silent acceptance, perpetual snubs, constant insults, is all that I deserve after so many years." He resents his loss of control and influence in the family and is extremely unhappy to be regarded as "only the breadwinner." Juneja's friendship provided Mahendranath with an alternate sanctuary of solace and comfort in the midst of the family's emotional and financial crisis, as a result of Savitri's constant insults and accusations and their subsequent repercussions in giving him an inferiority complex. He began to define himself in terms of his in utility and failure and sought solace in temporary acts of rebellion such as leaving the house and seeking meaning and mental peace in Juneja's company. Furthermore, due to his lack of conviction and inability to make independent decisions, Mahendranath sought identity affirmation through psychological dependence on others and, in the early years of his marriage, patriarchal control and restriction of Savitri's autonomy. The fact that Mahendranath finally returns in the end, relying on his own judgement rather than Juneja's, establishes the futility of his search and, once again, reinforces the play's Absurdist stance.


The fact that Savitri never explores the realm of identity as a single working woman, but instead defines herself in terms of fulfilment in her various relationships with various men raises important questions about women's status as autonomous individuals in society.


Furthermore, Mahendranath and Savitri's inability to find meaning in their relationship can be viewed as a virtual breakdown of marriage as a social institution. The values and regard on which family and marriage have so far rested are rapidly losing their meaning and significance in our fast-changing society and in the face of belated individualism among its members. Assertion of personal rights and freedoms within a group-unit (family), which necessitates inter-personal adjustments, causes a crisis because there are no principles to guide these adjustments, which, in the current context, cannot be thou. With new structures of familial division of labour and the rise of working women, all family relations must be redefined.


Mahendranath's despair must be understood not only in terms of the emotional crisis he is experiencing as a result of the breakdown of familial relations and a lack of mutual respect, but also in terms of the economic crisis that appears to be at the root of all problems. When the roles of provider and receiver are reversed, when the economic equations of earner and acceptor are altered and redefined in terms of sex and gender, Mahendranath loses his position in the family. Their current poverty appears to be the result of a typical middle-class lifestyle of living beyond one's means, with the search for identities occurring only when existing identities clash with shifting economic divisions of labour within the family. As a result, Mahendranath's search for meaning in life is triggered by new economic arrangements within the family and his inability to solve the economic crisis.


To summarise, while Mohan Rakesh's "Halfway House" deals extensively with the question of identity and meaning in life, placing it solely in an Existentialist context and assigning it the distinction of being the play's primary concern would unfairly downplay many other socio-economic themes that the play encompasses.


Q 4) Evaluate the character of Julius Caesar. 20

Ans) Shakespeare is more interested in creating a character who is consistent with the other aspects of his drama than in portraying a figure of legendary greatness when he uses Julius Caesar as a central figure. Julius Caesar would be little more than a suspense and revenge melodrama if Brutus and Cassius were eminently evil men plotting the cold-blooded murder of an eminently admirable ruler. On the other hand, if Caesar were solely the bloodthirsty tyrant, Brutus' hesitation would be unfounded, and Antony's thirst for vengeance would be unjustified. In fact, Shakespeare creates a character in Caesar who is occasionally reasonable, occasionally superstitious, occasionally compassionate, and occasionally arrogantly aloof. As a result, he has portrayed Caesar as a man who the nobility has reason to fear but who is not a villain.


In Act I, Scene 1, Flavius concludes his criticism of Caesar by expressing his fear that Caesar wishes to "soar above the view of men / And keep us all in servile fearfulness." His fear is confirmed when Casca and Antony's attitude toward Caesar demonstrates that they regard him as a man whose every wish should be considered a command by the citizens of Rome. Caesar's self-perception throughout the play demonstrates that he shares that attitude. He has no fear of Cassius because he believes he is beyond the reach of mere humans, and he concludes his explanation of his inability to feel fear by saying, "... for always I am Caesar." However, his mention of his partial deafness highlights the contrast between the vain man who sees himself in godlike terms and the actual, ageing man who stands idly by. The haste with which he has Flavius and Marullus "put to silence" emphasises his potential for evil. Finally, just before his death, Caesar compares himself to the gods of Olympus in his determination to continue his arbitrary administration of Roman justice.


Caesar's burgeoning arrogance and pride outweighed his demonstrated ability to reason. When he tells Calphurnia how strange it is to him "that men should fear; / Seeing that death, a necessary end, / Will come when it will come," he is expressing a fatalistic acceptance of death's inevitability. But it is not his belief that the hour of his death has been predetermined and thus cannot be avoided that causes him to ignore the portents, his priests, and Calphurnia. Instead, he dismisses them as a threat to his pride and ambition, which Decius represents. Caesar, who is so astute in his assessment of Cassius, is not always able to see "quite through the deeds" of a cunning deceiver.


Caesar openly displays a superstitious nature from the beginning, but he also displays a proclivity to ignore warnings and signs that should alert a man of his beliefs. He enters the play by advising Calphurnia to seek a cure for her sterility through ritual, and he exits fifteen lines later, dismissing the soothsayer as "a dreamer." He ignores the soothsayer, Calphurnia, the many portents, his priests, and finally Artemidorus because he has lost sight of himself as a fallible human being, and he is adamant about being crowned He has no fear of Cassius, despite the fact that he knows he is a threat to political leaders, because he believes he and Cassius exist on different levels of existence. Cassius is a mortal, whereas Caesar is a god. His sense of superiority to his fellow humans, as well as his overriding ambition to be king, lead him to think of himself in terms of abstract qualities, considering himself older and more terrible even than "danger."


Caesar's status as a playable character survives his assassination. In fact, Brutus and the conspirators succeed in dismembering the corporeal Caesar, but they fail to destroy his spirit. Antony first invokes the spirit of Caesar in his soliloquy in Act III, Scene 1, and then uses it in Act III, Scene 2 to incite the citizens of Rome to revolt. The ghost of Caesar appears to Brutus at Sardis and again at Philippi, indicating that Brutus has been unable to reconcile his involvement in the murder on a mental and moral level, as well as that his and Cassius' fortunes are fading. Only when Cassius and Brutus commit suicide, each acknowledging that he does so to still Caesar's spirit, does Caesar's spirit cease to be a force in the play.


Q 5) Comment on the ending of the play Ghashiram Kotwal. 20

Ans) Vijay Tendulkar has written a tragedy. It is, without a doubt, a great tragedy.


Ghashiram, the protagonist or central character, is a poor Brahmin from Kanauj who has come to Pune in search of a better life. However, he is humiliated here. Nana, the city's ruler, was a lustful woman. He has been married seven times and is still married.


Ghashiram is seen here working at Bavannkhani, a red-light district, alongside Gulabi, who entertains Nana. Here, Ghashiram meets Nana. Nana joins Gulabi in dance and injures his ankle, but Ghashiram saves him by offering his back as a resting place for his injured leg. Nana rewards you with a necklace. Gulabi's servants, however, snatched it and threw him out.


Ghashiram tries to take alms at another Dakshina ceremony, but other Brahmins throw him out, accusing him of stealing a purse. Despite his innocence, he was imprisoned.


Nobody wanted to believe he was a Brahmin. People kept asking where your shaved head was. What happened to your holy thread? What happened to your pios look? What happened to your holy book?


He transforms from a good person to an evil man as a result of such humiliations. He was enraged by the society's hatred, jealousy, immorality, lust, adultery, and other vices, and he resolved to avenge his insults by making the city moral.


It is a pivotal moment in the play. Ghashiram learns that Nana is a womaniser who will go to any length to get a woman. As a result, he baits his own daughter, Lalita Gauri. Nana sees Gauri during a religious ceremony and falls madly in love with her. Ghashiram is aware of this and tells Nana that he will give his daughter to her, but that he wants to become a Kotwal (police officer) in Pune. Nana agreed, and Ghashiram was given the title of Kotwal of Pune.


Ghashiram is dedicated to his job and issues directives such as no whoring without a permit, no cremation without a permit, and eating with a lower caste is a crime. People are irritated by such rules. Ghashiram believes he has brought the city to a state of peace. Now that he had power, he believed he could find a husband for his daughter and arrange a wedding. But, after learning of his daughter's death as a result of Nana's pregnancy, he became disinterested and moved on to another marriage. Ghashiram crumbles. He confesses his sins, but what can he do now?


When some Brahmins arrive in Pune, the play will come to an end. They ate mangoes from the garden without asking Ghashiram because they were hungry. Ghashiram gives the order to imprison them, but the prison was too small, and twenty-two Brahmins died of suffocation.


Peshwa receives complaints from the public. When Peshwa meets Nana, Nana sentences Ghashiram to death. Ghashiram repents before dying, indicating that he was feeling guilty. "I danced on your chests, but I squandered the life of my little daughter; I should be punished for her death; beat me, heat me; cut off my hands and feet; crack my skull. Come on. Look! I'm here. Oh, that's good. Very good," he says. The play's themes include revenge, power lust, politics, and the search for identity, among others. It adheres to Aristotelian tragedy's rules. We have a tragic hero in this play who is neither completely bad nor completely good. He has hamartia, such as a desire for power and vengeance. His social standing was high, so his downfall has an impact on the entire city of Pune

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