Activism stands for making efforts to promote, obstruct, or direct social, political, economic, or environmental change. Different forms of activism are political activism, economic activism or aesthetic activism. In the post-colonial literature, writers like Ngugi wa Thiong’o, James Baldwin, Ken Saro-Wiwa have used their political activism for bringing revolutionary changes in the society. Mahasweta Devi, one of most distinguished Bengali writers of this century has continued the tradition of these writers through her art which has been hailed as her aesthetics of activism. Devi’s main focus remains on radical feminist realism. The present paper makes a textual analysis of Devi’s seminal work Rudali and explores how her aesthetics have played a determining role in personifying the idea of women empowerment in India.
Keywords: Activism, Aesthetics, Post Colonial, Feminist realism, Empowerment
Mahasweta Devi, a social activist was one of most distinguished Bengali writers of this century. She occupies a unique position among the important signatures of Indian literature of post colonial era. Born in Dhaka, British India in a rich Bengali family, Devi inherited artistic immensity from her artist father Manish Chandra Ghatak and social worker cum activist mother Dharitri Devi. In her adolescence, Devi saw her steady involvement with the social and political theatre of colonial India. Devi finished up studies with a Masters in English and pursued several careers like jobs