Darker The Times, More the Responsibility and Role That Artists Can Play: Nandita Das (Video)
"When there are divisions, there is fear, there is anger, there is violence, I think artist can be a balm."
Actor-turned-filmmaker Nandita Das, in a conversation with Karwan-e-Mohabbat, spoke about the current political and social climate and an artists role during such times.
She says, “This is not a time to be silent. This is a time to speak up, speak your own mind and whatever your convictions are — in a constitutional way, in a civil way and in a compassionate way.”
“I’m a mother of an eight year old and I feel that this is not the world I would like to leave for him and for all the children,” Das adds.
Last month, actor Naseeruddin Shah had made similar observations when he had said that today, the death of a cow holds more significance than the death of a policeman, and that he was worried for his children.
Speaking on the role of artists in such times, says, “Darker the times, more the responsibility and the role that artists can play. Especially when there are divisions, there is fear, there is anger, there is violence, I think artist can be a balm.” She explains that through poetry, paintings, writings and films, “we (artists) can trigger conversations, we can spark new ideas, we can challenge prejudices”.
She explains that one should react to the current times by first looking within our own selves. “What are my prejudices?”
On Saadat Hasan Manto, the author on whose life she recently directed Nawazuddin Siddiqui starrer ‘Manto’, Das says, “Manto is not just the write, Manto represents a certain way of thinking —the will to be more honest, the will to be more free spirited, the will to be more courageous”.