About the Book

Welcome to the Stigmas of the Tamil Stage website. The book that gives this site its name is an ethnographic study of the lives of artists who perform a genre of South Indian theater known as "Special Drama." Special Drama is a contemporary theatrical form begun in the late 19th century and still very much alive today. (To see some of the extant early broadsheets that advertised these dramas between 1891-1942, click on drama notices.) Special Drama is performed exclusively in the Tamil language, the official language of the southern Indian state of Tamilnadu.

You can also view video clips of several comedy acts analysed in the book by downloading them here. Click on the appropriate size and speed for your computer connection (modem, dsl, or full digital format), and the clip will download onto your computer. The performances are in Tamil (subtitles still to come...), and English translations are available in Chapters 4, 5, & 6 of the book, wherein each performance is contextualized and discussed.

Susan Seizer is the author (and amateur videographer) responsible for this project. When not pursuing theater in India she can be found teaching communication & culture at Indiana University.   

Thanks for visiting the site. Your comments are welcome.


Information about Susan Seizer's syllabi can be found here.
Susan Seizer's CV can be found under about the author.

Video Clips
Drama Notices
About the Author
Related Links