The play is a strong commentary upon a patriarchal family system. It focuses on the theme of emptiness and uselessness resetting from adherence to patriarchal code. The autocratic father tries to check the movements and manners of his son and his daughter-in-law Ratna, although the father is considered as a man of progressive ideas and liberal views. The play dramatizes the conflict between the old and the young through the characters of the old father and the young son. The family ties and marriage discord are highlighted through series of conflicts among the members of the family.
The patriarchal hegemony is highlighted through the clash between Jairaj and Amritlal. Individual identities and choices are denied under the power of patriarchy and also of wealth. Dattani uses traditional Bharathanatyam Dance as a tool to tell the story while it generates its own psyche that guides or misguides the characters on stage. Dance is a very significant factor in this play which means different things to different characters. Jairaj and Ratna want to develop their career as dancers and for them, dance is not only a form of art but also their life and soul. It is not only their passion but also a tool that will help them to gain the desired success.…show more content… Jairaj and Ratna are subjected to the dominance of the patriarch Amritlal, Jairaj’s father.The play Dance like a Man focuses on the theme emptiness and uselessness resulting from strict adherence to patriarchal code. The play depicts how patriarchal set up deprives the other members of the family from being celebrity as a dancer. “Ratna is frustrated in her dream of being celebrity.After the death of Amritlal, her daughter Lata becomes an excellent star of Bharatnatyam”(Maheswari