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About This Course

Natyashastra, the fifth Veda, is one of the most essential texts of drama, dance, music, arts and fine arts in India and all over the world. It is certainly one of the most ancient ones. The Rasa theory given by Bharat Muni in Natyashastra is the basis on which many artistic disciplines have evolved over the course of Indian history.

This course introduces the student to the structure of Natyashastra in thirteen lucid chapters explaining the different aspects of the text, the tradition and the evolution of the dramatic tradition in India.

What You’ll Learn

The course discusses: the origin of Natyashastra, the performance of Natya, the contents of the various chapters of the Natyashastra, kinds of theatre, ancient Indian theatre, elements of play, the Natya Karanas described in the Natyashastra, the date of Natyashastra, the performance before the play, the most important concept of Rasa, the various Bhavas, and the commentary of various commentators, classical and modern.

  • You will learn what is the text and the tradition of Natyashastra. What do the different chapters of the Natyshastra teach. When did the Natyshastra originate? What is its age? You will learn what are the different kinds of theatre and what was the theatre house in the ancient Indian theatre.

  • You will get to know who is the Nata, the performer of Natya, and what is the purpose behind the performance of a Natya. You will learn the similarities and differences between the elements of the European play and the Indian play.

  • You will learn about the 108 Karanas described for the first time in the Natyashastra and how the Natyashastra through its description of Karanas influenced many artistic disciplines in India like sculpture, painting, dance etc.

  • You will learn about Poorvaranga, the performance before the play, its various steps and why after all there is a Poorvaranga. Most importantly, you will learn about the concept of Rasa, the single most important concept of arts and aesthetics in ancient India, the concept which defined the direction of various artistic disciplines.

  • You will also get to learn what different commentators had to say about Natya and how artistic disciplines are seen in an India defined by dharmic values.

Course Curriculum

Chapter 1 - The Birth of Natyashastra
1.1 – What is Natyashastra? 00:00:00
1.2 – Who is Nata? 00:00:00
1.3 – What does Natyashastra contain? 00:00:00
1.4 – Five Fundamental Questions 00:00:00
1.5 – How was Natyashastra created? 00:00:00
1.6 – For Whom Natyashastra is created? 00:00:00
1.7 – Natyashastra : The Fifth Veda 00:00:00
Quiz 1: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 2 - The Performance of Natya
2.1 – Natyashastra: Transmitting Vedic Knowledge 00:00:00
2.2 – Who can perform Natya? 00:00:00
2.3 – The Performance of Natya 00:00:00
Quiz 2: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 3 - The Contents of Natyashastra
3.1 – Indian position about Theatre 00:00:00
3.2 – Natyashastra vs. Natya Veda 00:00:00
3.3 – The Natyashastra – Chapter 1 – 5 00:00:00
3.4 – The Natyashastra – Chapter 6 – 13 00:00:00
3.5 – The Natyashastra – Chapter 14 – 18 00:00:00
3.6 – The Natyashastra – Chapter 19 – 32 00:00:00
Quiz 3: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 4 - Ancient Indian Theatre
4.1 – Different Kinds of Theatre 00:00:00
4.2 – Theatre House 00:00:00
4.3 – Ancient Indian Theatre 00:00:00
Quiz 4 – Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 5 - The Important Elements of Indian Play
5.1 – The Elements of European Play 00:00:00
5.2 – The Elements of Indian Play – I 00:00:00
5.3 – The Elements of Indian Play – II 00:00:00
5.4 – The Elements of Indian Play – III 00:00:00
Quiz 5: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 6 - The Origin of Dance
6.1 – The Origin of Dance 00:00:00
6.2 – What is Karana? 00:00:00
6.3 – The Natya Karanas in Temple Sculpture 00:00:00
Quiz 6: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
7.1 – The Dating of Indian Texts 00:00:00
7.2 – The Dating of Valmiki Ramayana 00:00:00
7.3 – The Dating of Natyashastra 00:00:00
7.4 – Ancient Greek Drama and Ancient Indian Drama 00:00:00
Quiz 7: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 8 - The Bharat Muni
8.1 – The Gandharva 00:00:00
8.2 – The Natyashastra belongs to the Age of the Vedas 00:00:00
8.3 – The Bharat Muni and Natyashastra 00:00:00
Quiz 8: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 9 - The Poorvaranga – Performance before the Play
9.1 – What is Poorvaranga? 00:00:00
9.2 – The First Phase of Poorvaranga 00:00:00
9.3 – The Second Phase of Poorvaranga 00:00:00
Quiz 9: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 10 - The Concept of Rasa
10.1 – The Concept of Rasa 00:00:00
10.2 – The Theory of Emotions 00:00:00
10.3 – The Bhava and Rasa 00:00:00
10.4 – The Rasa Sutra 00:00:00
10.5 – The Taste and Rasa 00:00:00
Quiz 10: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 11 - The Bhavas
11.1 – What are the Sthayi Bhavas? 00:00:00
11.2 – What are Vyabhichari Bhavas? 00:00:00
11.3 – What are Sattvika Bhavas? 00:00:00
11.4 – The Relationship between Sthayi Bhavas and Rasa 00:00:00
Quiz 11: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 12 - The Four Classical Commentators
12.1 – Lollat : The First Commentator 00:00:00
12.2 – Shankuk : The Second Commentator 00:00:00
12.3 – Bhattanayak : The Third Commentator 00:00:00
12.4 – Abhinavgupta : The Fourth Commentator 00:00:00
Quiz 12: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited
Chapter 13 - Dr. Bharat Gupt’s ‘Samyuktivaad’
13.1 – Samyuktivaad – I 00:00:00
13.2 – Samyuktivaad – II 00:00:00
Quiz 13: Natyashastra – 1 Unlimited

Course Reviews

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  1. 5

    Dr. Gupt made it interesting with sheer details from text. Would like to get more light on significance of all these elements in current contexts and which thing he feels should be revived. Looking forward for communication on it

Centre For Indic studies
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