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Freedom Means More Than Just

  • Date Submitted: 09/04/2010 10:26 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 46.4 
  • Words: 286
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Growing Indigo in 19th Century India
The growing of Indigo was not a very profitable business in the 19th century in India. The European Indigo planters oppressed their workers, which led to several rebellions over the years." 1861 saw the 'Blue Mutiny' in

 Bengal, when farmers rose against the forcible cultivation of the un-remunerative indigo crop. This offered an unprecedented opportunity to the educated community in Calcutta to close its ranks and come out in protest against the tyranny of the European planter." (pp.36) *1

The play 'Nildarpan' or the 'Indigo Planting Mirror' was a well-written play on life on the indigo plantation, as well as the cruelties of the indigo planters towards their workers. " Some of the enthusiasts got together and formed a group. They called it the National Theatre, hired the courtyard of Madhusudhan Sanyal's mansion in Jorasanko at Rs. 40 a month, built a stage and announced their opening performance for 7 December 1872. This was another play by Dinabandhu Mitra, "Nildarpan", a powerful protest against the tyranny and exploitation of the indigo planters. 'The Englishman' fumed and threatened, but other papers acclaimed the production-Nabagopal Mitra's 'National Paper' called it 'an event of national importance'- and the play was staged again a fortnight later. The Rev. James Long brought out an English translation of "Nildarpan", written perhaps by himself or by Michael Madhusudan Datta. Long was imprisoned for his pains, but gradually Europeans too turned to the play. A special performance was held for them on 19 April 1873, after which the same 'Englishman' wrote: 'The really conspicuous talent for histrionic art possessed by the Bengali cannot be seen to better advantage than in this drama."

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