Voices in the Back Courtyard – Punjabi Short Stories

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Item Code: IHL317
Author: Narinder Jit Kaur
Publisher: Rupa Publication Pvt. Ltd.
Edition: 2010
ISBN: 9788129116192
Pages: 182
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 7.8 Inch X 5.2 Inch
Book Description
From back of the book

Fifteen women writers come together, weaving a spectrum of varied hues, each turning a page out of the book of her life’s experience as a woman – and the result is a patchwork of beautiful narratives Right from Amrita Pritam of the 50s, to Veena Verma of the 21st century, this book traces a sinuous path of struggle, emotional turmoil, unfulfilled dreams and social rejection, which becomes a source of strength for these writers.

The stories are representatives of Punjab’s social milieu, its myopic attitude towards women, along with its revelry and celebration of life, which is a sustaining force for its people.

Narinder Jit Kaur teaches English at Govt. Ranbir College, Sangrur, Punjab. She has translated two novels ‘Twilight’ and ‘Ann – Data’ and has also translated many short stories and poems in English and Punjabi. Many of her works have been published in various newspapers and magazines. A versatile translator, she lives in Patiala with her husband and two sons.

Translator’s Note

Translating a literary work from one language into another is as demanding as creative writing itself. Each language has its own set of grammatical rules, idioms, metaphors and connotations; and it requires lots of perseverance and patience to create corresponding sentence structures in another language quite different and distant from the original one. The translator has a dual responsibility as he/she needs to have a complete command over the socio – cultural nuances of both the languages. One requires maintaining the sanctity of the original text and without tempering with its essence and tenor show his/her own creative and technical skills.

Translating these fifteen stories had been a pleasure as well as a challenge for me. In the beginning, there was a feeling of awe as I was dealing with the works of all very senior and seasoned women writers of Punjabi literature. But as the work went on, I could feel a bond growing between me, the translator, and the writers. I could go deep into the mind and mood of each writer and my work became a very enjoyable experience.

The stories have been very meticulously selected as to include only those stories that deals with universal issues which prevail in every society. Efforts have been made to avoid the stories dealing with local or regional issues, as it could limit the scope of a wide readership, which is the target of this collection.

I would like to thank all the writers for having reposed their faith in me and giving me their unconditional support and co – operation. I must say that they were all excited at the very idea of these translations, which strengthened m resolve to take up this project.

In the end I would like to thank my family, particularly my husband Dr. S. P. Singh for his support, without which I would not have been able to complete this project.


Acknowledgments ix
Translator’s Note xi
Shah’s Harlot – Amrita Pritam 1
God and Seasons – Dalip Kaur Tiwana 10
Wait – Ajeet Cour 18
Face in the Mirror – Prabhjot Kaur 28
Sparks in the Ashes – Bachint Kaur 36
The Survivors – Sukhwant Kaur Mann 44
The Seven Maidens – Rajinder Kaur 56
Inferno of Silence – N. Kaur 65
Spook - Rashim 74
Trembling Shadow – Sharan Makkar 87
Too Close, Too Distant – Balwinder Brar 93
Trails of the Bare Feet – Chandan Negi 102
The Purchased Women – Veena Verma 113
The Unfitting Cardigan – Baljit Balli135
Agony of a Daughter – Sharanjit Kaur 152
Glossary 168
Sample Pages

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