Some say Tagore’s women were perhaps entrapped in the social mores, archetypical notions of femininity, reconciliation with the times and hence conformed to the patriarchal order of the society. Some say Tagore’s women, despite the constraints of the home and the world in their times, had a quiet strength of character and sensibilities that elevated them from the shackles of their lived lives. Well, we would argue perhaps his women had shades of both ends of the spectrum, or perhaps not.
What cannot be denied is that there is a special role of female characters in the entire literature of Rabindranath Tagore and he never ceased to highlight women's issues. There are so many cinematic adaptations of stories and novels by Tagore, revolving around women, and the number gets bigger every year. And, we reckon if you could look beyond the era-specificity of the stories, you would realise that the ambiguities, dilemmas, turmoil and complexities faced by Tagore’s women in their specific situations would still ring relevant to modern times.
On the 80th death anniversary of ‘Kabiguru’ Rabindranath Tagore, among other monikers, we bring you select films based on Tagore’s stories and novels that placed women as the central subjects of his observations of the society and the nation through them.