chapter  4
18 Pages

Politics and the film in Tamil Nadu: The stars and the DMK

Introductory Note: The following paper, based on research I conducted in

Tamil Nadu in 1969-70, was published in 1973,1 in the wake of the split in

the DMK that led to the creation of the All-India Anna DMK (AIADMK).

In the years since, the two parties have remained the major political forces

in the state, the DMK under the continued leadership of M. Karunanidhi;

while, on the death of M. G. Ramachandran (MGR), the leadership of the

AIADMK passed to Jayalalitha, who was, when I interviewed her in 1969,

a young starlet in M.G.R.’s film galaxy. For an extended version of this paper see ‘When Stars Displace the Gods: The Folk Culture of Cinema in

Tamil Nadu,’ in my Essays in the Political Sociology of South India (1979,