Subscribe for Newsletters and Discounts
Be the first to receive our thoughtfully written
religious articles and product discounts.
Your interests (Optional)
This will help us make recommendations and send discounts and sale information at times.
By registering, you may receive account related information, our email newsletters and product updates, no more than twice a month. Please read our Privacy Policy for details.
.
Share
Share our website with your friends.
Email this page to a friend
By subscribing, you will receive our email newsletters and product updates, no more than twice a month. All emails will be sent by Exotic India using the email address info@exoticindia.com.

Please read our Privacy Policy for details.
|6
Your Cart (0)
Books > Language and Literature > Balika Badhu (A Representative Anthology of Bengali Short Stories)
Displaying 982 of 4434         Previous  |  NextSubscribe to our newsletter and discounts
Balika Badhu (A Representative Anthology of Bengali Short Stories)
Pages from the book
Balika Badhu (A Representative Anthology of Bengali Short Stories)
Look Inside the Book
Description
Translator's Preface

This project, which began with the desire to render into English a rather long tale by Bimal Kar about five years ago, eventually grew into a considerably more extended compilation of Bengali short stories by ten of the most well- known practitioners of that art since the heyday of Rabindranath Tagore. The collection is limited in many ways, not the least of which being that no woman writer has been included, and that it contains only a baker's dozen stories (if we count Bonophool's micro-stories collectively as one)-a number pitifully small considering the vast and prolific field of authors and stories a translator has at his or her disposal. I have attempted to explain my rationale for my intent and selections in the introductory essay.

Since beginning this project, I have sustained a number of personal losses, and what makes the completion of it particularly poignant for me is that the individuals who have left my world were almost unanimously supportive of my feeble efforts at upholding Bengal's contributions to the literary and cultural heritage of the world. My work continues, and my only solace is that I had come to know these kind people with extraordinary wisdom and humility, and that they had extended to me a generosity and affection that exceeded by far my capacity to reciprocate or demonstrate my worthiness.

For their support and encouragement, I must sincerely thank my friend and colleague Nikolaos Bourbakis, and another friend and mentor, Arindam Purkayastha-two individuals with unlimited optimism and uncommon goodness of heart. A special note of thanks is also due to a dear friend, Sandeep Mitra, whose enthusiastic and well- reasoned commitment to preserving and enhancing the history and culture of India is only matched by his genuine interest in all aspects of human civilization.

Finally, let me close this prologue by expressing the hope that my young son and daughter, growing up in a place separated by continents from the land of their parents' birth, may develop an active interest in the history, aspirations and achievements of India and Bengal, and attempt to bring those far-flung outposts of high civilization closer to the rest of the world-a world increasingly interconnected by commerce and communication, yet still so far apart, at times, in spirit and goodwill.

 

Introduction

Measured even by the standards of excellence achieved by Bengali literature in the past one hundred and fifty years, covering such diverse areas as poetry, fiction, drama, suspense, crime, belles-lettres, and historical and psychological novels, the short story as a literary genre stands apart in a class of its own. Several selected anthologies of short stories published in Bengali in the last two decades of the twentieth century emphasize two principal factors: firstly that the editors had to be virtually ruthless in limiting the collection, given the prodigious number of outstanding works in the pool from which the selections had to be made; and secondly that of all the components of Bengali literature, it is the short story which is truly and indisputably world-class. A two-volume anthology, entitled Swa-Nirbacbita Shreshtha Galpa (Self-Selected Best Short Stories), edited by renowned authors Bibhutibhushan Mukhopadhyay and Samaresh Basu, and published by Model Publishing House, Calcutta, in 1987, attempted to cover one hundred years (with author's birth years in the range 1861- 1960) of the short stories by bringing together a collection of, self-selected best short story contributed by each of one hundred and seventeen authors, including those widely acclaimed, as well as apparently less well-known. The anthology mentions that the selection was made with deference to the noble tradition of the Bengali short story, and to the creativity and variety represented by the collection. Another anthology, thematically compiled as the authors' first acclaimed stories (the title in Bengali was Pratham Shara Jagano Galpa), and edited by Ananda Bagchi, was published in 1989 by Pushpa Publishers, Calcutta. This anthology emphasizes the distinction between a self-selected best story collection, and a first acclaimed stories collection. While the former is picked out by the author alone, from the compendium of his or her works, reflecting individual taste or preference, the latter is based on viewing one's own work from the perspective of the wider readership, and fine, ''1g a resonance within one's own mind. While such a collection may well be regarded as being driven by popular acceptance, and therefore become subject to reservations with regards to its literary merit, the anthology goes on to claim that instant and spontaneous popularity does have a measure of lasting value.

A slightly different class of selected short stories in Bengali, developed out of a tradition of Sharadiya Special Issues (published annually during the autumn Durga Puja festival in Bengal) of Desh and other literary magazines for well over fifty years, links the development of experimental and creative writing in Bengali with the proliferation of news and literary magazines. These two components have clearly been mutually supportive, and consequently short stories published in literary magazines have, within only a few decades, been accorded the same admiration otherwise reserved for classic works published by elite publishing houses.

During the 1970s, the National Book Trust of India took up a plan to publish short stories written in the constitutionally recognized regional languages of India, along with their translations in the other languages. This initiative resulted in a collection entitled Ekushti Bangla Galpa (Twenty One Bengali Short Stories), edited by Arun Kumar Mukhopadhyay, Professor of Bengali Language and Literature, University of Calcutta, and published by the Trust in 1977. Professor Mukhopadhyay has provided an excellent overview of the different periods, classifications and evolution of the Bengali short story It turns out that the present collection of English translations, even if decidedly small in number and scope, docs however contain samples from each of the key periods discussed by Professor Mukhopadhyay: The introduction presented here will draw generously from Professor Mukhopadhyay's commentary.

While selected anthologies in Bengali based on the works of a number of authors distributed over a certain period have started to appear more regularly in the last twenty-five years, it turns out that the history of collected or selected short stories by individual authors goes back a great deal further. Several of Rabindranath Tagore's short-story collections were published in the years 1895, 1912, 1916 and 1941, and his illustrious Galpa Guchchha (A Bouquet of Stories), was published posthumously in four parts in 1964. Likewise, collections of stories by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay were published as early as 1916.

By contrast, and with greater significance in relation to the present effort, English translations of Bengali short stories, taken as a whole, have been virtually non-existent. The same could in all likelihood be said of other works of Bengali literature, especially those of the last fifty years; however, that matter is beyond the scope of this discussion. With the exception of Rabindranath Tagore, Bibhuti Bhushan Bandyopadhyay, and a handful of others, few authors from Bengal have had their works competently represented, if at all, in English. Tagore was already known in English literary circles as a master story-teller as early as 1912, thanks to the efforts of painter William Rothenstein, Modern Review editor Ramananda Chattopadhyay, and others. Moreover, following the world-wide interest generated by his Nobel Prize in 1913 (which was won as the first non-European in the world to be so honoured), his short-stories, as much as his other works, began to be translated sporadically in many languages. With Bibhuti Bhushan, part of the impetus, no doubt, was generated by the runaway critical success of the film Pather Panchali by India's greatest director, Satyajit Ray. Thereafter, some of his writings appeared in translation under the auspices of UNESCO in the 1950s and '60s. More recently, a collection of Bibhuti Bhushan's short stories, translated by Phyllis Granoff, was published as part of the UNESCO Indian Series by Mosaic Press, Ontario, Canada, in 1984. The collection included the story Puin Mancha, which (as translated by the translator of this volume) is also included in the present anthology. Other writers who have received some attention include Mahasweta Devi (thanks in large part to the efforts of Gayatri Chakravarty Spivak in the United States), Saryajir Ray; and, to a much smaller extent, Premendra Mitra. The overwhelming absence of the best works of the greatest names in the post-Tagorean Bengali literature in the English language would readily explain why writers of Indian origin, writing in English directly, appear so much more successful in the international arena, and reach a much wider audience, compared with those writing in the regional vernacular within India. This leads us directly into the debate spurred by Salman Rushdie's famous (or infamous, depending on one's perspective) 1995 assertion that "the best Indian writing in the past fifty years has been in English. JJ We shall return to this matter a little later.

According to Professor Mukhopadhyay, the first truly successful writer of the Bengali short story was, of course, Rabindranath Tagore. In his magical hands, the short story received its breath of life, and prospered in astonishing ways. His genius touched virtually every facet of the short story: romance, nature, social ills, philosophy, poetic subtlety, history, and humour. He made forays into each realm at will, and wrote almost uninterrupted for close to fifty years between 1890 through 1940.

Approximately contemporaneous with Tagore, we find Trailokyanath Mukhopadhyay, Prabhat Kumar Mukhopadhyay, Pramatha Choudhuri (who also wrote under the pseudonym Birbal), and, of course, the writer perhaps second only to Tagore in the areas of the psychological novel and the short story, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay (who also occasionally wrote under the pseudonyms Anupama Devi and Anila Devi). These gifted authors enriched the storehouse of Bengali short stories with a rich and varied harvest.

 

Contents

 

Translator's Preface ix
Introduction xi
Balika Badhu 1
Abhagir Swarga 97
Mahesh 114
Puin Mancha 132
Trini Mancha 152
Dehantar 174
Chokha Gyalo 193
Parul Prasanga 195
Ek Phonta Jal 197
Sarthakata 199
Naudi O Taalgaachh 201
Pukure 203
Taj Mahal 206
Level Crossing 211
Fossil 228
Ajantrik 248
Ras 258
Ekti Shatrur Kahini 288
Glossary 313
Biographical Notes on Authors 331

Sample Pages

















Balika Badhu (A Representative Anthology of Bengali Short Stories)

Item Code:
NAJ892
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2009
Publisher:
Rupa Publication Pvt. Ltd.
ISBN:
9788171676910
Language:
English
Size:
8.0 inch x 5.5 inch
Pages:
337
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 285 gms
Price:
$20.00   Shipping Free
Look Inside the Book
Add to Wishlist
Send as e-card
Send as free online greeting card
Balika Badhu (A Representative Anthology of Bengali Short Stories)

Verify the characters on the left

From:
Edit     
You will be informed as and when your card is viewed. Please note that your card will be active in the system for 30 days.

Viewed 1824 times since 26th Mar, 2016
Translator's Preface

This project, which began with the desire to render into English a rather long tale by Bimal Kar about five years ago, eventually grew into a considerably more extended compilation of Bengali short stories by ten of the most well- known practitioners of that art since the heyday of Rabindranath Tagore. The collection is limited in many ways, not the least of which being that no woman writer has been included, and that it contains only a baker's dozen stories (if we count Bonophool's micro-stories collectively as one)-a number pitifully small considering the vast and prolific field of authors and stories a translator has at his or her disposal. I have attempted to explain my rationale for my intent and selections in the introductory essay.

Since beginning this project, I have sustained a number of personal losses, and what makes the completion of it particularly poignant for me is that the individuals who have left my world were almost unanimously supportive of my feeble efforts at upholding Bengal's contributions to the literary and cultural heritage of the world. My work continues, and my only solace is that I had come to know these kind people with extraordinary wisdom and humility, and that they had extended to me a generosity and affection that exceeded by far my capacity to reciprocate or demonstrate my worthiness.

For their support and encouragement, I must sincerely thank my friend and colleague Nikolaos Bourbakis, and another friend and mentor, Arindam Purkayastha-two individuals with unlimited optimism and uncommon goodness of heart. A special note of thanks is also due to a dear friend, Sandeep Mitra, whose enthusiastic and well- reasoned commitment to preserving and enhancing the history and culture of India is only matched by his genuine interest in all aspects of human civilization.

Finally, let me close this prologue by expressing the hope that my young son and daughter, growing up in a place separated by continents from the land of their parents' birth, may develop an active interest in the history, aspirations and achievements of India and Bengal, and attempt to bring those far-flung outposts of high civilization closer to the rest of the world-a world increasingly interconnected by commerce and communication, yet still so far apart, at times, in spirit and goodwill.

 

Introduction

Measured even by the standards of excellence achieved by Bengali literature in the past one hundred and fifty years, covering such diverse areas as poetry, fiction, drama, suspense, crime, belles-lettres, and historical and psychological novels, the short story as a literary genre stands apart in a class of its own. Several selected anthologies of short stories published in Bengali in the last two decades of the twentieth century emphasize two principal factors: firstly that the editors had to be virtually ruthless in limiting the collection, given the prodigious number of outstanding works in the pool from which the selections had to be made; and secondly that of all the components of Bengali literature, it is the short story which is truly and indisputably world-class. A two-volume anthology, entitled Swa-Nirbacbita Shreshtha Galpa (Self-Selected Best Short Stories), edited by renowned authors Bibhutibhushan Mukhopadhyay and Samaresh Basu, and published by Model Publishing House, Calcutta, in 1987, attempted to cover one hundred years (with author's birth years in the range 1861- 1960) of the short stories by bringing together a collection of, self-selected best short story contributed by each of one hundred and seventeen authors, including those widely acclaimed, as well as apparently less well-known. The anthology mentions that the selection was made with deference to the noble tradition of the Bengali short story, and to the creativity and variety represented by the collection. Another anthology, thematically compiled as the authors' first acclaimed stories (the title in Bengali was Pratham Shara Jagano Galpa), and edited by Ananda Bagchi, was published in 1989 by Pushpa Publishers, Calcutta. This anthology emphasizes the distinction between a self-selected best story collection, and a first acclaimed stories collection. While the former is picked out by the author alone, from the compendium of his or her works, reflecting individual taste or preference, the latter is based on viewing one's own work from the perspective of the wider readership, and fine, ''1g a resonance within one's own mind. While such a collection may well be regarded as being driven by popular acceptance, and therefore become subject to reservations with regards to its literary merit, the anthology goes on to claim that instant and spontaneous popularity does have a measure of lasting value.

A slightly different class of selected short stories in Bengali, developed out of a tradition of Sharadiya Special Issues (published annually during the autumn Durga Puja festival in Bengal) of Desh and other literary magazines for well over fifty years, links the development of experimental and creative writing in Bengali with the proliferation of news and literary magazines. These two components have clearly been mutually supportive, and consequently short stories published in literary magazines have, within only a few decades, been accorded the same admiration otherwise reserved for classic works published by elite publishing houses.

During the 1970s, the National Book Trust of India took up a plan to publish short stories written in the constitutionally recognized regional languages of India, along with their translations in the other languages. This initiative resulted in a collection entitled Ekushti Bangla Galpa (Twenty One Bengali Short Stories), edited by Arun Kumar Mukhopadhyay, Professor of Bengali Language and Literature, University of Calcutta, and published by the Trust in 1977. Professor Mukhopadhyay has provided an excellent overview of the different periods, classifications and evolution of the Bengali short story It turns out that the present collection of English translations, even if decidedly small in number and scope, docs however contain samples from each of the key periods discussed by Professor Mukhopadhyay: The introduction presented here will draw generously from Professor Mukhopadhyay's commentary.

While selected anthologies in Bengali based on the works of a number of authors distributed over a certain period have started to appear more regularly in the last twenty-five years, it turns out that the history of collected or selected short stories by individual authors goes back a great deal further. Several of Rabindranath Tagore's short-story collections were published in the years 1895, 1912, 1916 and 1941, and his illustrious Galpa Guchchha (A Bouquet of Stories), was published posthumously in four parts in 1964. Likewise, collections of stories by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay were published as early as 1916.

By contrast, and with greater significance in relation to the present effort, English translations of Bengali short stories, taken as a whole, have been virtually non-existent. The same could in all likelihood be said of other works of Bengali literature, especially those of the last fifty years; however, that matter is beyond the scope of this discussion. With the exception of Rabindranath Tagore, Bibhuti Bhushan Bandyopadhyay, and a handful of others, few authors from Bengal have had their works competently represented, if at all, in English. Tagore was already known in English literary circles as a master story-teller as early as 1912, thanks to the efforts of painter William Rothenstein, Modern Review editor Ramananda Chattopadhyay, and others. Moreover, following the world-wide interest generated by his Nobel Prize in 1913 (which was won as the first non-European in the world to be so honoured), his short-stories, as much as his other works, began to be translated sporadically in many languages. With Bibhuti Bhushan, part of the impetus, no doubt, was generated by the runaway critical success of the film Pather Panchali by India's greatest director, Satyajit Ray. Thereafter, some of his writings appeared in translation under the auspices of UNESCO in the 1950s and '60s. More recently, a collection of Bibhuti Bhushan's short stories, translated by Phyllis Granoff, was published as part of the UNESCO Indian Series by Mosaic Press, Ontario, Canada, in 1984. The collection included the story Puin Mancha, which (as translated by the translator of this volume) is also included in the present anthology. Other writers who have received some attention include Mahasweta Devi (thanks in large part to the efforts of Gayatri Chakravarty Spivak in the United States), Saryajir Ray; and, to a much smaller extent, Premendra Mitra. The overwhelming absence of the best works of the greatest names in the post-Tagorean Bengali literature in the English language would readily explain why writers of Indian origin, writing in English directly, appear so much more successful in the international arena, and reach a much wider audience, compared with those writing in the regional vernacular within India. This leads us directly into the debate spurred by Salman Rushdie's famous (or infamous, depending on one's perspective) 1995 assertion that "the best Indian writing in the past fifty years has been in English. JJ We shall return to this matter a little later.

According to Professor Mukhopadhyay, the first truly successful writer of the Bengali short story was, of course, Rabindranath Tagore. In his magical hands, the short story received its breath of life, and prospered in astonishing ways. His genius touched virtually every facet of the short story: romance, nature, social ills, philosophy, poetic subtlety, history, and humour. He made forays into each realm at will, and wrote almost uninterrupted for close to fifty years between 1890 through 1940.

Approximately contemporaneous with Tagore, we find Trailokyanath Mukhopadhyay, Prabhat Kumar Mukhopadhyay, Pramatha Choudhuri (who also wrote under the pseudonym Birbal), and, of course, the writer perhaps second only to Tagore in the areas of the psychological novel and the short story, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay (who also occasionally wrote under the pseudonyms Anupama Devi and Anila Devi). These gifted authors enriched the storehouse of Bengali short stories with a rich and varied harvest.

 

Contents

 

Translator's Preface ix
Introduction xi
Balika Badhu 1
Abhagir Swarga 97
Mahesh 114
Puin Mancha 132
Trini Mancha 152
Dehantar 174
Chokha Gyalo 193
Parul Prasanga 195
Ek Phonta Jal 197
Sarthakata 199
Naudi O Taalgaachh 201
Pukure 203
Taj Mahal 206
Level Crossing 211
Fossil 228
Ajantrik 248
Ras 258
Ekti Shatrur Kahini 288
Glossary 313
Biographical Notes on Authors 331

Sample Pages

















Post a Comment
 
Post Review
Post a Query
For privacy concerns, please view our Privacy Policy

Related Items

Bengali Household Tales (Volume I)
by William Mcculloch
Paperback (Edition: 2002)
Rupa Publication Pvt. Ltd.
Item Code: NAF615
$7.00
SOLD
The Modern Bengali Dictionary for Non-Bengali Readers (2 Volumes)
Deal 15% Off
by Asit Kumar Bandyopadhyay
Hardcover (Edition: 1999)
The Asiatic Society
Item Code: IDF987
$75.00$63.75
You save: $11.25 (15%)
SOLD
The Renovation of Folktales (By Five Modern Bengali Writers)
by Bansari Mitra
Paperback (Edition: 2002)
Anthropological Survey of India
Item Code: NAF172
$15.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
The Bengali Reader
by Duncan Forbes
Hardcover (Edition: 2007)
Sagnik Book Publishers, Kolkata
Item Code: IDK359
$29.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
The Oxford India Anthology of Bengali Literature: 1861-1941 and 1941-1991 (Set of Two Volumes)
Deal 12% Off
by Kalpana Bardhan
Hardcover (Edition: 2010)
Oxford University Press
Item Code: IHJ004
$95.00$83.60
You save: $11.40 (12%)
Add to Cart
Buy Now
When Poetry Comes (A Selection Of Poems By Contemporary Bengali Women Poets
by Marian Maddern
Paperback (Edition: 2007)
Sahitya Akademi
Item Code: NAD928
$15.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
Arogyaniketan (Bengali Novel)
by Tarashankar Bandyopadhyay
Hardcover (Edition: 2009)
Sahitya Akademi
Item Code: NAJ714
$25.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
The All Bengali Crime Detectives
by Suparna Chatterjee
Paperback (Edition: 2011)
Rupa.Co
Item Code: NAD381
$17.50
Add to Cart
Buy Now
Learn Bengali in 30 Days
by N. S. R. Ganathe
Paperback (Edition: 2006)
Balaji Publications
Item Code: IDJ599
$8.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
An Intensive Course in Bengali (An Old and Rare Book)
by Krishna Bhattacharya
Hardcover (Edition: 1994)
Central Institute of Indian Language, Mysore
Item Code: NAK951
$40.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
Learning Bengali (A Self-Tutor with Roman)
Deal 10% Off
by Dr.Alibha Dakshi
Hardcover (Edition: 2003)
Sanskrit Pustak Bhandar
Item Code: NAD694
$30.00$27.00
You save: $3.00 (10%)
Add to Cart
Buy Now
Bengali Classics
by Edited By: Anant Pai
Paperback Comic Book (Edition: 2004)
Amar Chitra Katha
Item Code: ACL90
$14.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now
Manimahesh: Award - Winning Bengali Travelogue
by Umaprasad Mukhopadhyay
Hardcover (Edition: 2006)
Sahitya Akademi
Item Code: IDJ013
$14.00
Add to Cart
Buy Now

Testimonials

I recieved my Mahavir pendant today. It is wonderful. I was recently in Delhi and as it was a spiritual trip visiting Jain temples in Rajasthan, Agra, Rishikesh and Delhi i did not have the opportunity to shop much. The pendant is beautiful and i shall treasure it. I have attached a picture of me in India. Your country and the people will always be in my heart.
Evelyn, Desoto, Texas.
I received my Order this week, It's wonderful. I really thank you very much.
Antonio Freitas, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
I have been ordering from your site for several years and am always pleased with my orders and the time frame is lovely also. Thanks for being such a wonderful company.
Delia, USA
I recviced Book Air Parcel(Nadi-Astrology). I am glad to see this book. Thankx. Muhammad Arshad Nadeem Pakistan.
Muhammad Arshad Nadeem
It is always a great pleasure to return to Exotic India with its exquisit artwork, books and other items. As I said several times before, Exotic India is far more than a highly professional Indian online shop; it is in fact an excellent ambassador to the world for the splendour of Indian wisdom and spirituality. I wish a happy and successful New Year 2017 to Exotic India and its employees! You can be very proud of yourself!
Dr Michael Seeber (psychiatrist and psychotherapist, Essen/Germany)
My last order arrived in a reasonable amount of time, regarding the long way it had to take! I am glad to find this and some other ayurvedic remedy, as well as books and much other things at your online-store and I am looking forward to be your customer again, some time.
Andreas, Germany.
Намаскар! Честно говоря, сомневался. Но сегодня получил свой заказ. Порадовала упаковка, упаковано всё очень тщательно и аккуратно. Большое спасибо, как раз подарок к Новому Году! Namaskar! Frankly, I doubted. But today received my order. We were pleased with the packaging. Everything is packed carefully and accurately. Thank you very much, just a gift for the New Year!
Ruslan, Russia.
Thanks for the great sale!! It really helped me out. I love Exotic India.
Shannon, USA
I have got the 3 parcels with my order today and everything is perfect. Thank you very much for such a good packaging to protect the items and for your service.
Guadalupe, Spain
Great books! I am so glad you make them available to order, thank you!
Yevgen, USA
TRUSTe online privacy certification
Language:
Currency:
All rights reserved. Copyright 2017 © Exotic India