Education, Empowerment and Eros: Fakir Mohan Senapati’s “Rebati”
Keywords:Allegory, Woman’s education, Patriarchy, Ideological Ambivalence, Social Stereotypes
Fakir Mohan Senapati’s “Rebati”, considered to be the first short story written in Odia, has now been hailed as a classic for the manner it dramatizes burning social issues that the Odia society confronted at the end of the nineteenth century, majorly women’s education, in a seemingly simple yet powerful narrative. Senapati, in the story, has immortalized the character of Rebati, the ten-year-old girl from nineteenth century rural Odisha, so as to express his views regarding various facets of women’s education and its relation to empowerment in a style that has historically appealed readers of all age groups. The paper attempts to highlight Fakir Mohan’s ideological ambivalence towards women’s education as well as heterosexual love as represented in the story.
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