skip to main | skip to sidebar
Home » , » Consider Begum Rokeya's Sultana's Dream as a satire

Begum Rokeya's Sultana's Dream as a satire

A satire may roughly and briefly be defined as a humorous or witty exposure of human follies and vices. By means of a satire an author can strip the veil from things, and expose the reality of individuals, communities,  groups of people , institutions,  etc. A satirist generally employs irony,  mockery , ridicule and sarcasm as the weapons of attack.  Thus satire  is a kind of protest, a sublimation and refinement of anger and indignation. 
sultana's dream as a satire

Sultana's Dream is delightful satire written by Begum Rokeya, the harbinger of muslim women's awakening and emancipation .In this satirical story,  Rokeya depicts a feminist utopia, an imagined world where women are socially and politically dominant over men. Here the author uses such weapons as humour , wit,  irony,  mockery,  ridicule , sarcasm  to criticize social prejudices,  religious bigotry , social repression on women in the male-dominatef society.  Rokeya was always vociferous against the subjugation of women in the Muslim society of Bengal . She broke out of the fetters of the purdah system and advocated women's emancipation .

She knew that before women could be emancipated,  people's attitudes had to change . Being well aware of her intellectual faculty,  she took her pen to target these nonsensical practices and attempted to cure them. She spoke against the abuse of social and religious regulations that arrested the physical,  mental, and psychological growth of women in almost all her writings including Sultana's Dream.In Sultana's Dream  Rokeya is unequivocal in her condemnation of male-dominated society.  Her condemnation of the activities of the men in male-dominated society is clear in the following line:

Men, who do or at least are capable of doing no end of mischief,  are let loose and the innocent women, shut up in the zenana!
In this short story , Rokeya depicts a utopian country of Ladyland where the men remain confined to the mardaba,  the secluded male quarters and perform the daily murdane chores . On the other hand,  the women , headed by a queen , use their intellect to govern the country wisely and well. She ridicules the physical might of the male people who abuse their power in useless works and therefore they are not fit for dominating the society.  She wittily remarks,
A lion is stronger than a man , but it does not enable him to dominate the human race.
 Here Rokeya is playing with conventional religious and cultural justification for the seclusion of women . She also compares the brain of the men with that of the elephants. The author expression her disapproval of the character of the men who are not patient enough  to do a simple task. She says,
"......a man has not patience enough to pass thread through a needlehole even!
Then the author makes fun of the men's negligence to their duties and waste of time.  She says,
"They (men)dawdle away their time in smoking. Some smoke two or three choroots during the office time. They talk much about their work , but do little " 
The author,  then, criticizes the failure of the male soldiers to protect the country from foreign invasion which was later rescued by the intellect of the women. Rokeya blames the men for being responsible for all kinds of sin and crime in society. She remarks that since female rule has been established , there has been no crime or sin .So purity and virtue reigns over the country .Referring to the greed,  deception and other immoral traits of the male people,  Rokeya shows women's unwillingness to deal. with the men.  She remarks,

"Men ,we find,  are rather of lower morals and so we do not like dealing with them"
Throughout the short story,  Rokeya satirizes the character of the male people and their activities in the society.  She expresses the superiority of the women in all aspects of life. Considering all elements mentioned above, it can easily be concluded that Begum Rokeya's Sultana's Dream is a perfect example of satire. In fact her satirical portrayal of the male-dominated society incorporates nothing but her utmost desire for a civilized society where the men and women are equally treated. 


Unknown said...

Very helpful for Calcutta University students of 3 Rd semester thanks

Post a Comment

Back To Top