Episode 9 : Taking a Stand: How to Live in Troubled Times

In the 1990s, Girish’s work and his public persona took a distinctly political turn as he began to respond overtly to what was happening around him. Here, Girish talks about how he created strong women characters in his plays, how he saw Islam and Muslims as an integral part of our nation’s fabric, how he became a secular humanist.  He also talks for the first time about two short stories that he wrote in Kannada.


Show Notes

  1. Turning Point, a weekly DD National science program from 1991. (02:11)
  2. Godhuli (1977), directed by B V Karanth and Girish Karnad. (05:13)
  3. Vamsha Vruksha (1971), directed by B V Karanth and Girish Karnad. (05:39)
  4. ‘Theatre in India’, by Girish Karnad, published in Daedalus, Vol. 118. (14:45)
  5. Babri Masjid, a historical mosque that was demolished by Hindu nationalist mobs on December 6th, 1992. (16:12) 
  6. Gauri Lankesh on what Girish Karnad told her during the siege of Bababudangiri Dargah. (16:12)
  7. Desha Kaala, a Kannada quarterly literary journal. (16:52)
  8. Girish Karnad on V S Naipaul. (28:25)
  9. The Girish Karnad-Rabindranath Tagore controversy. (31:27)
  10. An interview with Girish Karnad on his thoughts on Tipu Sultan. (31:27)
  11. Girish Karnad’s statement on the Hubli-Dargah issue. (32:15)
  12. An A K Ramanujan Memorial lecture, delivered by Girish Karnad. (42:30)


  1. Girish Karnad on the political call to citizens for violence.