This book is about Communist-inspired cultural activism in Bengal that had strong national and international links, and responded to the critical social and political climate of the late colonial and early-Independence years. One of the main objectives of this activism was to give political direction to the middle-class and help them reach out to the labouring ‘other’. The ultimate aim was to establish a cultural counter-hegemony in society by preparing people for a big revolution. The objectives of this movement, however, remained largely unfulfilled even though it ignited creative talents of many writers and artists, and at the same time induced in them a political commitment that generated new themes and bold experiments in a range of art forms. This book, therefore, seeks to critically understand this cultural activism by examining three art forms, viz., music, theatre and pictorial art. It also locates the reasons for its failure in the middle-classness of this activism and in the lack of a long-term political mission, arguing further that this void was filled up by excessive stress on arts and aesthetics and that Bengal communism at its best remained cultural communism.