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Introduction to Rabindranath Tagore


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Introduction to Rabindranath Tagore

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Introduction to Rabindranath Tagore

  2. 2. Rabindranath Tagore (born May 7, 1861, Calcutta,India— died August 7, 1941, Calcutta, India)
  3. 3.  Bengali poet short-story writer song composer playwright essayist painter
  4. 4. Tagore introduced new prose and verse forms and the use of colloquial language into Bengali literature, thereby freeing it from traditional models based on classical Sanskrit. He was highly influential in introducing Indian culture to the West and vice versa, and he is generally regarded as the outstanding creative artist of early 20th-century India.
  5. 5. In 1913 he became the first non- European to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature. The son of the religious reformer DebendranathTagore, he early began to write verses, and, after incomplete studies in England in the late 1870s, he returned to India.
  6. 6. In 1891Tagore went to East Bengal (now in Bangladesh) to manage his family’s estates at Shilaidah and Shazadpur for 10 years.
  7. 7. There he often stayed in a houseboat on the Padma River (the main channel of the Ganges River), in close contact with village folk, and his sympathy for them became the keynote of much of his later writing.
  8. 8. In 1901Tagore founded an experimental school in rural West Bengal at Shantiniketan (“Abode of Peace”), where he sought to blend the best in the Indian andWestern traditions.
  9. 9. He settled permanently at the school, which became Visva-Bharati University in 1921.
  10. 10. Years of sadness arising from the deaths of his wife and two children between 1902 and 1907 are reflected in his later poetry, which was introduced to theWest in Gitanjali (Song Offerings) (1912).
  11. 11. ■ “The sleep that flits on baby's eyes - does anybody know from where it comes?Yes, there is a rumour that it has its dwelling where, in the fairy village among shadows of the forest dimly lit with glow-worms, there hang two timid buds of enchantment. From there it comes to kiss baby's eyes. The smile that flickers on baby's lips when he sleeps - does anybody know where it was born?Yes, there is a rumour that a young pale beam of a crescent moon touched the edge of a vanishing autumn cloud, and there the smile was first born in the dream of a dew-washed morning - the smile that flickers on baby's lips when he sleeps. The sweet, soft freshness that blooms on baby's limbs - does anybody know where it was hidden so long?Yes, when the mother was a young girl it lay pervading her heart in tender and silent mystery of love - the sweet, soft freshness that has bloomed on baby's limbs.” ■ Gitanjali (Song Offerings
  12. 12. This book, containingTagore’s English prose translations of religious poems from several of his Bengali verse collections, including Gitanjali (1910), was hailed byW.B.Yeats andAndré Gide and won him the Nobel Prize in 1913.
  13. 13. Tagore was awarded a knighthood in 1915, but he rejected it in 1919 as a protest against the Amritsar (Jallianwalla Bagh) Massacre.
  14. 14. Amritsar (Jallianwalla Bagh) Massacre
  15. 15. From 1912Tagore spent long periods out of India, lecturing and reading from his work in Europe, the Americas, and East Asia and becoming an eloquent spokesperson for the cause of Indian independence.
  16. 16. In the late 1920s, when he was in his 60s,Tagore took up painting and produced works that won him a place among India’s foremost contemporary artists.
  17. 17. As well, he wrote musical dramas, dance dramas, essays of all types, travel diaries, and two autobiographies, one in his middle years and the other shortly before his death in 1941.