Rabindranath Tagore’s concepts can form the basis of a critique of the idea of an over-centralised nation seeking cultural standardisation as also a plea for a more open, truly federal polity where people are free to imagine the nation in the way they want and relate to it on their own terms.
Though the concerns of modern Sri Lankan poetry are diverse, the war seems to have had a deep impact, with most poets questioning Sinhala nationalism and the cultural conservatism underpinning it.
The history of Indian criticism in the past few decades has been the history of the varied responses to various challenges and the attempts to arrive at some critical canon that might help unlock and explain contemporary Indian texts.
Even when poetry is dark and angst-ridden, it remains the scream of the agonised mind full of concern for the future or for humankind. Poetry speaks for the victims of all kinds of oppression.
Myths have not only survived science and technology but will continue to fascinate creative minds who find in them the threads to weave their own narratives that reflect the traumatic times they live in.
Rereadings of canonical texts side by side with the discovery of buried and forgotten texts have certainly unleashed a lot of radical energy in the realm of criticism.
On two autobiographies that deal with discontent and change but in radically different circumstances: set in two entirely different continents of experience, written in two different languages and following two different modes of narration.
January 4, 2014, marks 47 years since Atiya Fyzee Rahamin's death and her bequest to the Karachi municipal corporation, and 137 years since her birth; but neither all the time, nor all the changes and progress has produced the courage that would be needed to reclaim her legacy. By RAFIA ZAKARIA