Contextualising Theatre and Cultural Policy in India (1980s-90s) Through Newspaper Clippings
Beginning in the 1980s, economic liberalization in India had repercussions in the field of culture including theatre. A reader of Rangbharati magazine in May 1980 writes to its editor, “during the last thirty-three years of our independence we could not create a meaningful cultural awareness…the neo-capitalists and politicians pact, which is responsible for the rapid retardation of our nation’s economy and human values, has now started to play foul games in the cultural field”.
The Haksar Committee report of 1990 posed some pertinent questions on the definition of cultural policy, the impact of the transition of patronage from nobility to government in a democratic set-up, creation of infrastructure for festivals and cultural events on zonal levels, along side the national ones, to name a few. The committee report also identified and alerted the government to the trend of cultural production in the 1980s-90s, wherein the modern economies converted art into commodities and recommended the taming of the market ‘to serve the interest of man, nature and society’ (Haksar Committee Report, Page 153).Contextualising Theatre and Cultural Policy in India (1980s-90s) Through Newspaper Clippings
Images Courtesy: Anand Gupt Collection/ Alkazi Theatre Archives