The idea for collecting personal narratives related to Raj Kapoor and his films stems from my own research for my Master's thesis. I was exploring the influence and legacy of Raj Kapoor in the film industry, Indian society and in foreign countries while Kapoor was alive and what it continues to be today. In the course of my research I found "INDIAN CINEMA’S GLOBAL REACH: Historiography through testimonies" compiled by Dina Iordanova in South Asian Popular Culture (see sources page for more).  In the article she discusses how she's encountered a number of people with stories on Raj Kapoor and how his movies impacted their lives. In the academic world, each individual story can be dismissed or not taken seriously as alone it may not prove anything, but together groups of narratives can help paint a larger picture. This is especially true when traditional forms of proof (statistics on box office receipts, ticket sales, audience numbers, etc.) were not kept.  I had encountered this myself before even reading Iordanova's article. I've come across a number of people in my travels and research in India with stories about Raj Kapoor. Some met his fans in China or Russia and were able to connect with those people on a personal level through Kapoor. Some remember first watching his films as children with their parents or grandparents. One of my own professors remembers Kapoor coming to a town near her own in Germany (probably he was accepting the Grand Prix award in Karlovy Vary in the Czech Republic which is not far from the German border) and everyone was excited to meet the Great Showman.

These types of stories abound,but they have not, to my knowledge, been collected or compiled together in one place. I hope that this website will be the place. As narratives are submitted, I will post them here. Please check back from time to time to see what is new and if you know of anyone with a story to share, please let them know about the site.

Narratives:

"Meeting Raj Kapoor at the Barbershop" (April 10, 2007)

 
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