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SOAS South Asia Institute

The Politics of Desire: Reading Rituparno Ghosh as a Cultural Producer

Dr Sangeeta Datta

Date: 19 March 2014Time: 5:45 PM

Finishes: 19 March 2014Time: 9:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College BuildingsRoom: KLT (Talk) / DLT (Film Screening)

Type of Event: Film

Panel Discussion - 5.45 PM - 6.45 PM - Khalili Lecture Theatre

Chaired by Professor Rachel Dwyer

Rituparno Ghosh was a prolific filmmaker who spearheaded rapid change in Bengali cinema. Working through a period of industry depression, Ghosh single handedly revived the content and style of middle class Bengali cinema. Creating his own aesthetics and language, Ghosh not only forwarded the legacy of Ray but paved the way for younger filmmakers in a vastly dynamic industry.

This talk will assess Ghosh's vastly rich and varied oeuvre through domestic politics, historicals to the last trilogy dealing with the creative artist and alternate sexual identity. As writer, editor, lyricist, television host and in his last avatar as actor, Ghosh became the most prolific cultural producer in contemporary Bengal.

This illustrated talk will be given by writer- filmmaker and long term associate of Rituparno Ghosh, Sangeeta Datta. Preceding her own feature Life Goes On, she was Associate Director on Chokher Bali. Raincoat, Antarmahal, The Last Lear and the recent Jeebansmriti ( Selected Memories). She has recently produced the acclaimed stage play "Rituparno Ghosh" in Kolkata. She is currently co-editing a book on Ghosh for Routledge.

Film Screening: The Last Lear (2007) starring Preity Zinta and Amitabh Bachchan- 7.00 PM in the (Kamran) Djam Lecture Theatre
130 minsĀ 

The story revolves around Harish Mishra (Amitabh Bachchan), a retired Shakespearean theatre actor. The movie sees parallel narration from Goutam (Jishu Sengupta), a journalist who recalls his encounters with the veteran actor. He had suggested Harish for the lead role to his elder brother Siddharth (Arjun Rampal) who happens to be an ambitious perfectionist director. Harish finally agrees to act in the film. As the story unfolds one gets to know the reason behind his quitting theatre. The Last Lear becomes a captivating reflection on the comparative artifices of stagecraft and cinema.

Organiser: SOAS South Asia Institute

Contact email: centres@soas.ac.uk

Contact Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4893