The Tale Of Gandhi Through The Lens: An Inter-Textual Analytical Study Of Three Major Films- Gandhi, The Making Of The Mahatma, And Gandhi, My Father

C.S.H.N. Murthy, Oinam Bedajit Meitei, Dapkupar Tariang

Abstract


For over half a century Gandhi has been one of the favored characters of a number of films – Nine hours to Rama (1963) to Gandhi, My Father (2007). Gandhian ethos, life and teachings are frequently represented in varied ways in different films. The portrayal of Gandhi in different films can be grouped into two broad categories: i. revolving around his life, percept and practice as one category and ii. involving his ideas, ideals and views either explicitly or implicitly. The first category of the films include three broad films—Gandhi (1982), The Making of the Mahatma (1996) and Gandhi My Father (2007) and the other category of the films include Nine Hours to Rama (1963- English), Jinnah (1998- English), Sardar (1993), Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar (2000), Hey Ram (2000), Lage Raho Munnabhai, (2006) etc.  Grounded in the theory of inter-textuality through moving image method, the present study is a comparative analysis of examining the portrayal of Gandhi among the first category of three films ---Gandhi (1982- English) by Richard Attenborough, The Making of the Mahatma (1996) by Shyam Benegal and Gandhi, My Father (2007) by Feroz Abbas Khan with crisscross critiquing of the portrayal of Gandhi in the second category of films. Using Bingham’s (2010) discursive analysis on biopic films, the study seeks to show how Gandhi is perceived and depicted through the lenses of these three eminent directors vis-à-vis others from the point of intertextuality both ideologically and politically. Further the study would elaborate how different personal and social events in Gandhi’s life are weaved together by these directors to bring out the character of Bapu or Mahatma from Gandhi. For all the above critique, Gandhi’s autobiography-The Story of My Experiments with Truth-has been taken as a base referent

Keywords


Comparative analysis, Inter-textuality, Gandhian Ethos, Portrayal, crisscross critiquing, Mahatma, etc.

Full Text:

PDF

References


Balaram, S. (1989). Product Symbolism of Gandhi and Its Connection with Indian Mythology. Design Issues, Vol. 5 (2). Spring. 68-85.

Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (n.d). Delhi: Publications Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

Bingham, D.(1999). “I do want to live!”: Female Voices, Male Discourse and Hollywood Biopics. Cinema Journal. 38 (3). 3-26.

Dwyer, R. (2011). The Case of the Missing Mahatma: Gandhi and the Hindi Cinema. Accessed on Tuesday, ‎February ‎12, ‎2013, http://www.publicculture.org/articles/view/23/2/the-case-of-the-missing-mahatma-gandhi-and-the-hindi-cinema

Gandhi, M K (2008). The Story of My Experiments with Truth. Colorful Books International. New Delhi.

Genette, E.G. (1980). Narrative Discourse: An Essay Method. Cornell University Press. US.

Gupta, A. (1983). Attenborough's Truth: The Politics of Gandhi. The Threepenny Review, 15 Autumn. 22-23.

Gallagher, M. P. (1983). Ungrateful for 'Gandhi'?: Film Report. Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review,.72 (286). Summer. 185-188.

Indian Cinematograph Committee (1927), quoted in Rama Ramanathan, ‘The Theatre’s (In) Ability to Resist Censorship’, e-mail from newsletter, feedback@seagullindia.com (10 August 2005).

Jeffrey, R. (2006). The Mahatma didn’t like the movies and why it matters: Indian broadcasting policy, 1920s-90s. Global Media and Communication. 2(2). 204-224.

Juergensmeyer, M. (1984). The Gandhi Revival--A Review Article. The Journal of Asian Studies, 43(2). 293-298.

Patwardhan, A. (1983). Gandhi': Film as Theology. Economic and Political Weekly, 18 (16/17) 635-637.

Rai, D. (2011). Popular Hindi Cinema as Gandhi’s Alter Ego: An Exploration in Respect of Gandhi, My Father. Social Change. 41: 63-78.

Roy, D. (2010). Mahatma Gandhi and Indian Cinema. http://reviewessays.com/Music-and-Movies/Mahatma-Gandhi-Indian-Cinema/10303.html dated November 12, retrieved March 13, 2013.

Saunders, K. (1931). Mahatma Gandhi Seen Through His Autobiography. Pacific Affairs, 4(3) 201-209.

Spirou, P. (2011). New Scholarly Study of the Contemporary Biopic. New Scholar. 1(1). 78-82.

Srinivas, S.V. (1999). Gandhian Nationalism and Melodrama in the 30s Telugu Cinema. Journal of Moving Image.1 (Autumn) http://jmionline.org/film_journal/jmi_01/article_02.php# retrieved March 11, 2013.

Vasudevan, R. (2002). Another History Rises to the Surface: 'Hey Ram': Melodrama in the Age of Digital Simulation. Economic and Political Weekly, 37 (28). 2917-2925.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.5195/cinej.2013.66

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.




Copyright (c)



This journal is published by the University Library System, University of Pittsburgh

ISSN 2159-2411 (print) 2158-8724 (online)