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Awakening of Women and Their Role in National Freedom Movement: In Special Reference to Raja Rao’s Kanthapura

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.7, No. 6)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 177-182

Keywords : Freedom; Indian Independence Movement; Non- Cooperation movement; Women emancipation;

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The history of Indian struggle for independence is replete with stories of tremendous sacrifices made by the countrymen. Though the participation of women in freedom struggle was there since it's beginning but it was sporadic, men played the role of protagonists for the major part of the movement and women only came to the forefront after Gandhi's Ji initiation in the second and third decade of 20th century. These tradition-bound women fought with exemplary courage and commitment, side by side with their male counterparts, even so, many of them were left unsung. Raja Rao's ‘ Kanthapura' accounts the story of such brave Indian women using fictional characters. These women of village Kanthapura collectively represent the disadvantaged position of Indian women who were fighting a twin war, one at home with the patriarchal society trying to break away the shackles that limited their role to do household chores and the other with Britishers. The novel is told through a feminine point of view using the voice of Achakka, an old woman. Achakka traces the story of the immense changes that occurred in the life of these marginalised women of pre-independent India by Gandhian movement that was brought to their village by Moorthy, the hero of the novel. The novel articulates how Mass political movement like Non- Cooperation helped Indian women to cross the conventional boundaries to certain extent and in the manner the awakening of these women benefitted the Independent struggle in return. The characters of Rangamma and Ratna are presented as emerging new women who defy conventions and lead the war of independence. The present paper tries to explore the agonies suffered by hundreds of volunteer women, who following the Gandhian way chose the path of ahimsa to fight against the British raj. In order to voice against a foreign power these women came out of their well defined roles of goddess of the house and took on the role of Jhansi ki Rani, the fearless queen. The paper acknowledges the indelible sacrifices made by Indian women in India's freedom struggle

Last modified: 2022-12-23 19:15:50