Raja Ravi Varma’s creations are ubiquitous – in the images of Lakshmi and Saraswati we have grown up worshipping, in recreations of buxom women and children gracing calendars and advertising sundry products like powders,
Most of Tagore’s poems for children don’t seem to be written for children at all. In his collection ‘Crescent Moon’ (1913) for instance, each poem is like a gentle admonishment to remind us, the
In 1865 Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay wrote the first major novel in the history of Bengali literature, ‘Durgeshnandini’ (Doorgeshnondini) . While most of us recognize Chattopadhyay as the composer of ‘Vande Mataram’, he is also
This beautiful ode to love and childhood is an intimate conversation between two people who are getting to know each other, bit-by-bit and story by story. In this letter to his wife, Ramanujan mourns
S.W. Fallon (1870-1880) would have slipped through the pages of Indian history if it weren’t for his remarkable records of Indian vernacular languages. With a keen interest in local dialects, particularly their rural and
The beauty of local languages is in the intimacy they evoke. The sounds, words and phrases are all a melody to the ear of the attuned. Cultural values, a people’s ethos and their prejudices
For generations, women have been repositories of society’s deepest secrets. Even in his recording of folktales across the length and breadth of India, A.K. Ramanujan often noted that it was the women who had
The Bhakti Movement played a crucial role in the literary development of several Indian vernacular languages. It caught the public imagination, especially in the popularisation of Sikhism, as it used music and dance –
Possibly the most popular name in Assamese poetry, Hiren Bhattacharyya’s poetry brings up the lush imagery of nature; of paddy fields, of waves of green, of ripples in the air and of gushing rains.
The second story in Mahashweta Devi’s ‘Breast Stories’ collection, ‘Draupadi’, is the kind that gets under your skin and haunts you for days afterwards.
Unlike Jashoda from ‘Breast-Giver’ who is forced to become a professional