Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent

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Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« on: July 12, 2011, 12:55:31 PM »
Our subcontinent is rich in Literary creation. Here goes the brief introduction of some of the texts:
1.Meghduta :
A short poem of 111 stanzas, it is one of Kālidāsa's most famous works. It recounts how a yakṣa, a subject of King Kubera (the god of wealth), after being exiled for a year to Central India for neglecting his duties, convinces a passing cloud to take a message to his wife on Mount Kailāsa in the Himālaya mountains.[1] The yakṣa accomplishes this by describing the many beautiful sights the cloud will see on its northward course to the city of Alakā, where his wife awaits his return.
In Sanskrit literature, the poetic conceit used in the Meghaduta spawned the genre of sandesha kavya or messenger poems, most of which are modeled on the Meghaduta (and are often written in the Meghaduta's mandakranta metre). Examples include the Hamsa-sandesha, in which Rama asks a hamsa bird to carry a message to Sita, describing sights along the journey.
In 1813, the poem was first translated into English by Horace Hayman Wilson. Since then, it has been translated several times into various languages. As with the other major works of Sanskrit literature, the most famous traditional commentary on the poem is by Mallinātha.
Source: Wikipedia

Offline shipra

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2011, 03:19:50 PM »
Congratulations,madam.You have chosen a very rich topic.Continue.I'm very interested.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2011, 03:47:45 PM »
2.Bishad Shindhu (Bangla:বিষাদ-সিন্ধু)is a poetic novel about the history of prophet Muhammad's grand son Hasan, especially Husayn's assassination, and the war for the throne of Khalifa (the supreme power of Muslims). It was written by Mir Mosarraf Hussain, one of the first modern Muslim Bengali writers.

Bishad Shindhu was written within 1888 to 1890. It is one of the best known works of Bengali literature. But it is not considered an authentic source for the history of Karbala, the location of Husayn's war front, and the place of his death.

Bishad Shindhu is written in an epic style. It contains much poetic language, and many dramatic sessions. At the time, Bengali novels were rarely written, and a few writers (including Mosarraf Hussain) were trying to establish the concept of novels in Bangla. It was written in Shadhubhasha, a Sanskritised form of Bengali.

Many Bengali Muslims view the novel as a religious book, and in rural areas, it is the most valuable book after the Quran and the Hadith which is a collection of sayings and actions of Prophet Muhammad.
[edit] Main characters

    Hasan ibn Ali, elder brother of Husayn, grandson of Prophet Muhammad, son of Khalifa Ali ibn Abu Talib and Fatima Zahra.
    Husayn ibn Ali, younger brother of Hasan, grandson of Prophet Muhammad, son of Khalifa Ali and Fatema.
    Yajid, son of Muabia (a companion of the Islamic prophet Muḥammad ), rival of Hasan and Husayn, fighting for the throne.
    Shimar, Husayn's killer.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2011, 03:57:35 PM »
3. Some Poems by Kamala Das:

The Rain

We left that old ungainly house
When my dog died there, after
The burial, after the rose
Flowered twice, pulling it by its
Roots and carting it with our books,
Clothes and chairs in a hurry.
We live in a new house now,
And, the roofs do not leak, but, when
It rains here, I see the rain drench
That empty house, I hear it fall
Where my puppy now lies,
(From Only The Soul Knows How To Sing)

The Dance Of The Eunuchs

It was hot, so hot, before the eunuchs came
To dance, wide skirts going round and round, cymbals
Richly clashing, and anklets jingling, jingling
Jingling… Beneath the fiery gulmohur, with
Long braids flying, dark eyes flashing, they danced and
They dance, oh, they danced till they bled… There were green
Tattoos on their cheeks, jasmines in their hair, some
Were dark and some were almost fair. Their voices
Were harsh, their songs melancholy; they sang of
Lovers dying and or children left unborn….
Some beat their drums; others beat their sorry breasts
And wailed, and writhed in vacant ecstasy. They
Were thin in limbs and dry; like half-burnt logs from
Funeral pyres, a drought and a rottenness
Were in each of them. Even the crows were so
Silent on trees, and the children wide-eyed, still;
All were watching these poor creatures’ convulsions
The sky crackled then, thunder came, and lightning
And rain, a meagre rain that smelt of dust in
Attics and the urine of lizards and mice….
(From Summer in Calcutta)

Until I found you,
I wrote verse, drew pictures,
And, went out with friends
For walks…
Now that I love you,
Curled like an old mongrel
My life lies, content,
In you….
(From Summer in Calcutta)

It smelt of new rains and of tender
Shoots of plants- and its warmth was the warmth
Of earth groping for roots… even my
Soul, I thought, must send its roots somewhere
And, I loved his body without shame,
On winter evenings as cold winds
Chuckled against the white window-panes.
(From Summer in Calcutta)
The Stone Age

Fond husband, ancient settler in the mind,
Old fat spider, weaving webs of bewilderment,
Be kind. You turn me into a bird of stone, a granite
Dove, you build round me a shabby room,
And stroke my pitted face absent-mindedly while
You read. With loud talk you bruise my pre-morning sleep,
You stick a finger into my dreaming eye. And
Yet, on daydreams, strong men cast their shadows, they sink
Like white suns in the swell of my Dravidian blood,
Secretly flow the drains beneath sacred cities.
When you leave, I drive my blue battered car
Along the bluer sea. I run up the forty
Noisy steps to knock at another’s door.
Though peep-holes, the neighbours watch,
they watch me come
And go like rain. Ask me, everybody, ask me
What he sees in me, ask me why he is called a lion,
A libertine, ask me why his hand sways like a hooded snake
Before it clasps my pubis. Ask me why like
A great tree, felled, he slumps against my breasts,
And sleeps. Ask me why life is short and love is
Shorter still, ask me what is bliss and what its price….
(From The Old Playhouse and Other Poems)

The Maggots

At sunset, on the river ban, Krishna
Loved her for the last time and left…
That night in her husband’s arms, Radha felt
So dead that he asked, What is wrong,
Do you mind my kisses, love? And she said,
No, not at all, but thought, What is
It to the corpse if the maggots nip?
(From The Descendants)

Offline shipra

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2011, 11:38:47 AM »
 Dear Nahid Madam, before today, I didn't hear the name of Kamala Das.Now i feel happy to know about a new poet in our subcontinent.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2011, 11:56:23 AM »
Thank you Shipra
This is why I am interested in this topic

Offline Bhowmik

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2011, 12:18:13 PM »
Nahid Madam,
Good Job.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2011, 01:15:41 PM »
Gitanjali (Bengali: গীতাঞ্জলি) is a collection of 103 English poems, largely translations, by the Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore. This volume became very famous in the West, and was widely translated.[1]
Gitanjali (গীতাঞ্জলি Gitanjoli) is also the title of an earlier Bengali volume (1910) of 157 mostly devotional songs. The word gitanjoli is composed from "git", song, and "anjoli", offering, and thus means - "An offering of songs"; but the word for offering, anjoli, has a strong devotional connotation, so the title may also be interpreted as "prayer offering of song".[1]
The English collection is not a translation of poems from the Bengali volume of the same name. While half the poems (52 out of 103) in the English text were selected from the Bengali volume, others were taken from these works (given with year and number of songs selected for the English text): Gitimallo (1914,17), Noibeddo (1901,15), Khea (1906,11) and a handful from other works. The translations were often radical, leaving out or altering large chunks of the poem and in one instance even fusing two separate poems (song 95, which unifies songs 89,90 of naivedya).
The translations were undertaken prior to a visit to England in 1912, where the poems were extremely well received. A slender volume was published in 1913, with an exhilarating preface by W. B. Yeats. In the same year, based on a corpus of three thin translations, Tagore became the first non-European to win the Nobel prize.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #8 on: July 14, 2011, 01:16:34 PM »
A Golden Age is the first novel of the Bangladesh born writer Tahmima Anam. It tells the story of the Bangladesh War of Independence through the eyes of one family. The novel was awarded the prize for Best First Book in the Commonwealth Writers' Prize 2008. It was also shortlisted for the 2007 Guardian First Book Award. The first chapter of the novel appeared in the January 2007 edition of Granta magazine.The plot of the novel describes the true story of the writer's grandmother during the Bangladesh Liberation War. During the war her grandma helped the Freedom Fighters by protecting their ammunitions. Once when the army came to her house and threatened that they would take the youngest son of the family if she did not give them the information about the fighters, she somehow successfully tackled them. The person who portrays the character is named Rehana Haque. The story also covers the inner conflict of Rehana as she loses the custody of her children after her husband's death. Along with her desperate attempt to win the minds of her children, she tries to protect them as they get involved in the war.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #9 on: July 14, 2011, 01:17:47 PM »
Kazi Nazrul Islam, our National poet ,reached the peak of fame with the publication of "Bidrohi" in 1922, which remains his most famous work, winning admiration of India's literary classes by his description of the rebel whose impact is fierce and ruthless even as its spirit is deep:.[7]
I am the unutterable grief,
I am the trembling first touch of the virgin,
I am the throbbing tenderness of her first stolen kiss.
I am the fleeting glance of the veiled beloved,
I am her constant surreptitious gaze...
I am the burning volcano in the bosom of the earth,
I am the wild fire of the woods,
I am Hell's mad terrific sea of wrath!
I ride on the wings of lightning with joy and profundity,
I scatter misery and fear all around,
I bring earth-quakes on this world! “(8th stanza)” I am the rebel eternal,
I raise my head beyond this world,
High, ever erect and alone! “(Last stanza)”[8] (English translation by Kabir Choudhary)

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2011, 01:30:16 PM »
"Sultana's Dream" is a classic work of Bengali science fiction and one of the first examples of feminist science fiction. This short story was written in 1905 by Rokeya Sakhawat Hussain, a Muslim feminist, writer and social reformer who lived in British India, in what is now Bangladesh. The word sultana here means a female sultan, i.e. a Muslim ruler.[1]
"Sultana's Dream" was originally published in English in The Indian Ladies Magazine of Madras, and is considered part of Bengali literature. It depicts a feminist utopia in which women run everything and men are secluded, in a mirror-image of the traditional practice of purdah. The women are aided by science fiction-esque "electrical" technology which enables labourless farming and flying cars; the female scientists have discovered how to trap solar power and control the weather. This results in "a sort of gender-based Planet of the Apes where the roles are reversed and the men are locked away in a technologically advanced future."[1]
Crime is eliminated, since men were responsible for all of it. The workday is only two hours long, since men used to waste six hours of each day in smoking. The religion is one of love and truth. Purity is held above all, such that the list of "sacred relations" (mahram) is widely extended.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #11 on: July 14, 2011, 01:31:30 PM »
Ekattorer Dinguli (Bengali – একাত্তরের দিনগুলি) is a historical and autobiographical book based on 1971 liberation war of Bangladesh. Ekattorer Dinguli means ‘The days of 71′. The book is written by Jahanara Imam. She was popularly known as “Shaheed Janani” (Mother of Martyrs).  Download the pdf version of the book for free from the link given at the end of the post.Jahanara Imam’s son Rumi, a student, went out to fight against the Pakistani army in the urban regions, specially at Dhaka. This book contains Jahanara’s practical daily life as well as horrors.
The book concludes the fate of an unfortunate mother who lost her child as well as her dear husband during the war. She achieved the independence for such a great price that she had to sacrifice the life of her dear child Rumi and her husband.
Rumi was one of the most brilliant students of that time. He was supposed to go abroad for getting his degrees on Engineering. But due to the fate of his luck, the independence war of Bangladesh started and he himself rose for forward to become a volunteer for the “Mukti Bahini” (Freedom fighter). During the war once he was caught and taken away from his home. He no longer returned back.
Her husband Sharif was a banker. He had a heart attack during the war. But due to lack of electricity, the life saving machines could not be switched on as a result her husband faced death.
She got her independence but had to remain satisfied with her other son Jami. This book actually the cruelty of the war. It is also the auto-biography of the other thousands of mother of the war.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #12 on: July 14, 2011, 01:32:37 PM »
Lajja (Bengali: লজ্জা Lôjja) (Shame) is a novel in Bengali by Taslima Nasrin, a writer of Bangladesh. The word lajja/lôjja means "shame" in Bengali and many other Indic languages. The book was first published in 1993 in the Bengali language, and was subsequently banned in Bangladesh,[1][2] and a few states of India. It nonetheless sold 50,000 copies in the six months after its publication,[3] though Taslima fled her native Bangladesh after death threats from Islamic radicals.[4]
Nasrin dedicated the book "to the people of the Indian subcontinent", beginning the text with the words, "let another name for religion be humanism." The novel is preceded by a preface and a chronology of events.
Lajja is a response of Taslima Nasrin to anti-Hindu riots which erupted in parts of Bangladesh, soon after the demolition of Babri Masjid in India on 6 December 1992. The book subtly indicates that communal feelings were on the rise, the Hindu minority of Bangladesh was not fairly treated, and secularism was under shadow.In a far off place in Ayodhya, in the state of Uttar Pradesh in India, on 6 December 1992, Babri Masjid is demolished, and the demolition has repercussions even in Bangladesh, a different country, and a far off place from Ayodhya. The fire of communal rioting erupts, and the Dutta family also feels and faces the heat of the communal hatred. Each member of the Dutta family feels about this in his / her own way.
Sudhamoy, the patriarch of the family, feels that Bangladesh, his motherland, shall never let him down. Kiranmayee as a faithful wife stands by her husband’s views. Suranjan, their son, believes that nationalism will be stronger than communalism, but is progressively disappointed and finds himself adopting communal reactions which contrast entirely with the ideology of patriotism he has always had faith in. Nilanjana curses her brother’s apathy and coaxes his brother to take the family to a Muslim friend’s house for safety. It is a story of metamorphosis, in which disastrous events create disillusionment, resulting in violence and resentment.

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2011, 02:57:37 PM »
জেলগেটে দেখা – আল মাহমুদ

সেলের তালা খোলা মাত্রই এক টুকরো রোদ এসে পড়লো ঘরের মধ্যে
আজ তুমি আসবে ।
সারা ঘরে আনন্দের শিহরণ খেলছে । যদিও উত্তরের বাতাস
হাড়েঁ কাঁপন ধরিয়ে দিয়ে বইছে , তবু আমি ঠান্ডা পানিতে
হাত মুখ ধুয়ে নিলাম। পাহারাদার সেন্ট্রিকে ডেকে বললাম,
আজ তুমি আসবে । সেন্ট্রি হাসতে হাসতে আমার সিগ্রেটে
আগুন ধরিয়ে দিল । বলল , বারান্দায় হেটেঁ ভুক বাড়িয়ে নিন
দেখবেন , বাড়ী থেকে মজাদার খাবার আসবে ।

দেখো , সবাই প্রথমে খাবারের কথা ভাবে ।
আমি জানি বাইরে এখন আকাল চলছে । ক্ষুধার্ত মানুষ
হন্যে হয়ে শহরের দিকে ছুটে আসছে । সংবাদপত্রগুলোও
না বলে পারছে না যে এ অকল্পনীয় ।
রাস্তায় রাস্তায় অনাহারী শিশুদের মৃতদেহের ছবি দেখে
আমি কতদিন আমার কারাকক্ষের লোহার জালি
চেপে ধরেছি ।
হায় স্বাধীনতা , অভুক্তদের রাজত্ব কায়েম করতেই কি আমরা
সর্বস্ব ত্যাগ করেছিলাম ।

আর আমাকে ওরা রেখেছে বন্দুক আর বিচারালয়ের মাঝামাঝি
যেখানে মানুষের আত্মা শুকিয়ে যায় । যাতে
আমি আমরা উৎস খুঁজে না পাই ।
কিন্তু তুমি তো জানো কবিদের উৎস কি ? আমি পাষাণ কারার
চৌহদ্দিতে আমার ফোয়ারাকে ফিরিয়ে আনি ।
শত দুর্দৈবের মধ্যেও আমরা যেমন আমাদের উৎসকে
জাগিয়ে রাখতাম ।

চড়ুই পাখির চিৎকারে বন্দীদের ঘুম ভাঙছে ।
আমি বারান্দা ছেড়ে বাগানে নামলাম।
এক চিলতে বাগান
ভেজা পাতার পানিতে আমার চটি আর পাজামা ভিজিয়ে
চন্দ্রমল্লিকার ঝোপ থেকে একগোছা শাদা আর হলুদ ফুল তুললাম ।
বাতাসে মাথা নাড়িয়ে লাল ডালিয়া গাছ আমাকে ডাকলো ।
তারপর গেলাম গোলাপের কাছে ।
জেলখানার গোলাপ , তবু কি সুন্দর গন্ধ !
আমার সহবন্দীরা কেউ ফুল ছিড়েঁ না , ছিঁড়তেও দেয় না
কিন্তু আমি তোমার জন্য তোড়া বাঁধলাম ।

আজ আর সময় কাটতে চায়না । দাড়ি কাটলাম । বই নিয়ে
নাড়াচাড়া করলাম । ওদিকে দেয়ালের ওপাশে শহর জেগে উঠছে ।
গাড়ীর ভেঁপু রিক্সার ঘন্টাধ্বনি কানে আসছে ।
চকের হোটেলগুলোতে নিশ্চয়ই এখন মাংসের কড়াই ফুটছে ।
আর মজাদার ঝোল ঢেলে দেওয়া হচ্ছে
গরীব খদ্দেরদের পাতে পাতে ।

না বাইরে এখন আকাল । মানুষ কি খেতে পায় ?
দিনমজুরদের পাত কি এখন আর নেহারির ঝোলে ভরে ওঠে ?
অথচ একটা অতিকায় দেয়াল কত ব্যবধানই না আনতে পারে ।
আ , পাখিরা কত স্বাধীন । কেমন অবলীলায় দেয়াল পেরিয়ে যাচ্ছে
জীবনে এই প্রথম আমি চড়ুই পাখির সৌভাগ্যে কাতর হলাম ।

আমাদের শহর নিশ্চয়ই এখন ভিখিরিতে ভরে গেছে ।
সারাদিন ভিক্ষুকের স্রোত সামাল দিতে হয় ।
আমি কতবার তোমাকে বলেছি , দেখো
মুষ্টি ভিক্ষায় দারিদ্র্য দূর হয় না ।
এর অন্য ব্যবস্হা দরকার , দরকার সামাজিক ন্যায়ের ।
দুঃখের শিকড় উপড়ে ফেলতে হবে ।
আ , যদি আমার কথা বুঝতে ।

প্রিয়তমা আমার ,
তোমার পবিত্র নাম নিয়ে আজ সূর্য উদিত হয়েছে । আর
উষ্ণ অধীর রশ্মির ফলা গারদের শিকের ওপর পিছলে যাচ্ছে ।
দেয়ালের ওপাশ থেকে ঘুমভাঙ্গা মানুষের কোলাহল ।
যারা অধিক রাতে ঘুমোয় আর জাগে সকলের আগে ।
যারা ঠেলে ।
চালায় ।
হানে ।
ঘোরায় ।
ওড়ায় ।
পেড়ায় ।
আর হাত মুঠো করে এগিয়ে যায় ।
সভ্যতার তলদেশে যাদের ঘামের অমোঘ নদী ।
কোনদিন শুকোয় না । শোনো , তাদের কলরব ।

বন্দীরা জেগে উঠছে । পাশের সেলে কাশির শব্দ
আমি ঘরে ঘরে তোমার না ঘোষণা করলাম
বললাম , আজ বারোটায় আমার ‘দেখা’ ।
খুশীতে সকলেই বিছানায় উঠে বসলো ।
সকলেরই আশা তুমি কোন না কোন সংবাদ নিয়ে আসবে ।
যেন তুমি সংবাদপত্র ! যেন তুমি
আজ সকালের কাড়জের প্রধান শিরোনামশিরা !

সূর্য যখন অদৃশ্য রশ্মিমালায় আমাকে দোলাতে দোলাতে
মাঝ আকাশে টেনে আনলো
ঠিক তখুনি তুমি এলে ।
জেলগেটে পৌছেঁ দেখলাম , তুমি টিফিন কেরিয়ার সামনে নিয়ে
চুপচাপ বসে আছো ।
হাসলে , ম্লান , সচ্ছল ।
কোনো কুশল প্রশ্ন হলো না ।

সাক্ষাৎকারের চেয়ারে বসা মাত্রই তুমি খাবার দিতে শুরু করলে ।
মাছের কিমার একটা বল গড়িয়ে দিয়ে জানালে ,
আবরা ধরপাকড় শুরু হয়েছে ।
আমি মাথা নাড়লাম ।

মাগুর মাছের ঝোল ছড়িয়ে দিতে দিতে কানের কাছে মুখ আনলে ,
অমুক বিপ্লবী আর নেই
আমি মাথা নামালাম । বললে , ভেবোনা ,
আমরা সইতে পারবো । আল্লাহ , আমাদের শক্তি দিন ।
তারপর আমরা পরস্পরকে দেখতে লাগলাম ।

যতক্ষণ না পাহারাদারদের বুটের শব্দ এসে আমাদের
মাঝখানে থামলো ।

Offline Nahid Kaiser

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Re: Famous Literary texts of the Subcontinent
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2011, 03:24:21 PM »
The Autobiography of an Unknown Indian is the autobiographical work of one of India's most controversial writers -- Nirad C. Chaudhuri. He wrote this when he was around fifty and records his life from his birth at 1897 in Kishorganj, a small town in present Bangladesh. The book relates his mental and intellectual development, his life and growth at Calcutta, his observations of Vanishing Landmarks, the connotation of this is dual—changing Indian situation and historical forces that was making exit of British from India an imminent affair.
Nirad, a self-professed Anglophile, is in any situation an explosive proposition and in the book he is at his best in observing as well as observing-at-a-distance and this dual perspective makes it a wonderful reading. His treatment of his childhood, his enchantment, disillusionment and gratitude to the colonial capital Calcutta is highly factual as well as artistic to the extent highly readable.
Arguably, his magnum opus considering his literary output that he could generate as late age as ninety years, Autobiography is not a single book, it is many. Consciously or unconsciously he has left traces of all his erudition, his spirit and learning. Declaring himself a cartographer of learning, the book is also a cartographic evidence of the author's mind and its varied geographies, of the map as well as of the mind.
The dedication of the book runs thus:
“   To the memory of the British Empire in India,
Which conferred subjecthood upon us,
But withheld citizenship.
To which yet every one of us threw out the challenge:
"Civis Britannicus sum"
Because all that was good and living within us
Was made, shaped and quickened
By the same British rule.   â€

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