Muhammad Bin Tughlaq, who ruled from Delhi in the fourteenth century, was a man of many dimensions. A well-read scholar of the arts, theology, and philosophy, a brilliant calligraphist, a mystic, as well as a poet, it is the 'madness' that earned him the epithet 'Mad Muhammad', that Karnad explores in the play.
Using history and myth in equal measure, Karnad delves into the psyche of Muhammad to understand and interpret the rationale behind his whimsical actions. Operating at both symbolic and metaphoric levels, the action of the play is closely paralleled with 'contemporary' political and social events.
The new Prologue by Karnad recounts the personal history behind the genesis of the play as well as its afterlife-the many productions and general reception. With an Introduction by U.R. Ananthamurthy and an essay by Aparna Dharwadker, this Oxford India Perennials edition is the testimony of Tughlaq's enduring influence even after four decades of its first publication.
Girish Karnad is one of India's foremost playwrights and is best-known for his use of history and mythology to critique contemporary political and social issues. A World Theatre Ambassador of the International Theatre Institute, Paris, Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan, Karnad's plays have been translated into several Indian languages and staged all over the world.
PROLOGUE: THE MARCH OF 'TUGHLAQ' ; AUTHOR'S NOTE ; INTRODUCTION BY U.R. ANANTHAMURTHY ; TUGHLAQ ; 'HISTORICAL FICTIONS AND POSTCOLONIAL REPRESENTATION: READING GIRISH KARNAD'S TUGHLAQ' BY APARNA DHARWADKER