I can guaranty that there won’t be a single person in India who doesn’t know this amazing visionary poet, storyteller and musician of Bengal; the honor of India, The Bard of Bengal; Rabindranath Tagore. For his “because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West” he became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913. The work of Rabindranath Tagore is on every Indian’s lips in the form of our National Anthem Jana Gana Mana who also gave the national anthem of Bangladesh Amar Shonar Bangla.
Rabindranath Tagore started his short story career with a story Bhikharini (“The Beggar Woman”) when he was only sixteen. Since then he has been a most revered storyteller of Bengali literature. He has written numerous short stories which widely read in the eastern parts of India. His most significant works like ‘The postmaster’, ‘The Hungry Stones’ and ‘The Kabuliwallah’ were inspiration for landmark Indian films. Tagore has vividly woven cast culture, bureaucracy and poverty in his stories painting a portrait of nineteen century India.
Almost all eminent publishers have published Tagore’s short stories in variety of collections. However, the book I am taking up is from one of the leading publishers, Penguin. Penguin published the collection of Tagore’s selected short stories in 2005, as a part of their Penguin Classics series. Written during 1890s, these stories focus on Bengali life and landscape in their depiction of peasantry and gentry, casteism, corrupt officialdom and dehumanizing poverty. Penguin Classics have been nothing but pure pleasure for me whenever I have picked them to read. I am sure about this collection won’t be any exception to their reputation. I am eagerly waiting to dive in the world Gurudev Tagore has created in his stories. Hope you will also enjoy this collection.
You can grab your copy in two formats from following links
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Penguin (1 September 2005)
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2 thoughts on “Rabindranath Tagore: The Bard of Bengal – #BlogchatterA2Z”
Good write up about Tagore. I love many of his lesser known short stories.
The national anthem is a shame – it was written for a Britisher, hence Bharat Bhavya Vidhata. Vande Mataram would have been a more fitting anthem, but the politics of Nehru were way too pro- British.
Do check out my #AtoZ post on R
About national anthem, he himself has clearified about these allegations, in two or three letters, they are quoted on wikipedia page too…