A.N. Krishnarao (1908-1971). Novelist, short story writer, Playwright, biographer and cultural activist was one of the most prolific writers in Kannada literature during its Navodaya and Progressive phases. Though he made valuable contributions to the development of almost all the forms he is best remembered as a novelist who established the novels as the most important medium of expression of contemporary experience and influenced a whole generation of writers by opening out new areas of experience and by perfecting the art of story telling.
His novels deal with a variety of interrelated themes – the organic community based on traditional values and its disintegration under the pressure of modern life; the family and its breakdown: sex and marriage; the artist and his world; social evils like prostitution and commercializing of values – unrolling a vast panorama of a changing society caught in the conflict of tradition and modernity in the first half of the twentieth century in more than a hundred novels.
Sandhyaraga was the first novel in Kannada to receive critical attention in the form of a whole volume of essays in appreciation by reputed scholars. It has been translated into Hindi, Gujarati, Bengali and Tamil, though this is the first translation to appear in English.
G.S. Amur (b. 1925) is a well known critic in English and Kannada. He won the Sahitya Akademi award in 1996 for his Bhuvanada Bhagya, a critical study of D.R. Bendre, the eminent Kannada poet. Among the other awards he has received are; Rajya Prashasti and Pampaprashasti instituted by the Government of Karnataka, the Gaurava Prashasti by the Karnataka Sahitya Akademi, Bharatiya Bhasha Prashasti by Bharatiya Bhasha Parishat, Kolkata and A.N. Krishnarao Prashasti. His monograph on A.N. Krishnarao, written for the Sahitya Akademi, has been translated into several Indian languages. His translation of Om Namo, Shantinath Desai’s award-winning novel, is his most recent publication in English.
Those who have read my Udayaraga may consider this novel as a sequel. In terms of the story there are no connections between Udayaraga and Sandhyaraga. But in terms of the thematic interests – the artist’s life, his problems and his goal – there is continuity. In Udayaraga the artist finds a home in art. Here art finds a home in the artist. The earlier novel is a flute and this its music. The union of the two is divine and deathless music.
The artist may be a painter, a musician or a writer, but his movement in towards the harmony of life. What he sees as a fragment initially attains completeness of vision in the end. Only then his life finds fulfillment. Sandhyaraga is a picture of such an artist seeking wholeness. The second half of his story is yet to be written. That too will be the story of an artist’s struggle. Here the artist fights against the forces that come in the way of his progress. In the novel to follow he will give a picture of progress slipping away from the artist who pursues it, because of his own imperfections. This book is my dream for the future.
Sandhyaraga took shape in my mind years ago. I have transferred it to paper only during the last fortnight. The credit for this should go to Joshi Govindacharya. I am highly indebted to him for his love for me.
One word more. Sandhyaraga is not removed from life but it has not imitated life or living human beings. I fervently hope that no one will fell that it applies to him or is based on him and flatters himself.
Your email address will not be published *
Send as free online greeting card
Email a Friend