The widespread inauguration of the talkies during the early thirties, along with an altered environment of 'secular' national polity and feelings (the rise of organized dalit movements, or the proliferation of regional and linguistic impulses) precipitated a significant change in the panorama of Indian cinema. The mythological was gradually replaced by ostensibly 'secular' formats like the reformist social or the stunt film in terms of generic preponderance. This shift from an agrarian twilight to what are apparently urban, juridical, and secular-constitutive themes of the modern spectrum demands attention. It can be argued that despite the vanishing of gods and monsters as formal entities on screen, a primal mythic impelling remains consistent in the dominant 'secular/realistic' dispensation of narrating the national in the subsequent decades. A genealogical understanding of these exchanges between epic, lyrical, and ceremonial ontologies and realist-prosaic forms of representing the world could allow one to see how they have acquired an altogether new dimension in the contemporary age of planetary electronic publicity.
|Published - Jun 2006