LITERARY SEMINAR OVERVIEW
The theme of the literary seminar has been envisioned as ভুবনজোড়া আসনখানি -- বাংলা ও বাঙালী (Embracing the World: Bengal and Bengalis).
The theme of the literary seminar has been envisioned as "ভুবনজোড়া আসনখানি -- বাংলা ও বাঙালি" (Embracing the World: Bengali and Bengalis).
The literary seminar will identify distinctive values in cultural and social lives of Bengalis living worldwide, highlighting conflicts across generations, time, place, and beliefs. Eminent literary personalities from Bengal and the West will convey such issues as addressed in their work, ranging from deeply felt and intimate narratives of identity (সত্ত্বার সন্ধানে) to women’s issues in a global perspective (নারী ও শক্তি). The seminar series begins with a session offering tribute to Bangla language and literature and concludes with a session dedicated to diaspora literature (প্রবাসে বাঙালির সাহিত্য চিন্তা).
Saturday July 6, 2019
Session 1. (11 am - 1 pm) ভুবনজোড়া আসনখানি -- বাংলা ও বাঙালি
Session II (2 pm - 4 pm) সত্ত্বার সন্ধানে
Sunday, July 7, 2019
Session I (10am -12 pm): নারী ও শক্তি
Session II (1:30 pm-3:30 pm): প্রবাসে বাঙালির সাহিত্য চিন্তাMandakranta Sen
Mandakranta Sen is a prominent voice in contemporary Bengali poems. After a brief stint in Medicine at Nilratan Sirkar Medical College during 1991-1997, she quit and wrote her debut volume of poetry Hriday Abadhyo Meye. The youngest winner of Anondo Puroshkar, some of her other published works include Balo Anya Bhabe, Chhadma Puran, Utsarito Alo, Akashbhara Bandhutara, Barshaphalake Gantha Har, Kavya Sangraha, Jhanpatal. She has also received the Akash Bangla Barsha Samman (2002) and Krittibas Puraskar (2003) and the Swarnajayanti Special Sahitya Academy Young Writers Award (2015) which she returned in protest of attacks on writers and rationalists
Prof. Mandakranta Bose is Emeritus Professor and Director of the Centre for India and South Asia Research at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver. Dr. Bose is a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and the Royal Society of Canada. Among her many publications are: Classical Indian Dancing: A Glossary, Movement and Mimesis: The Idea of Dance in the Sanskritic Tradition, Nartananirnaya, The Ramayana Revisited, Sangitanarayana Women in the Hindu Tradition, and many articles including several on Tagore and on Hindu cultural and religious traditions.
Swapnamoy Chakraborty is a well- known name in the Bengali literary circle. His lucid style is liked by all. He has many best-sellers to his credit, some of which include Holde Golap, Chotushpathi, Shera Ponchashti Golpo, Bheja Barud, Anugolpo Sangroho, Abantinagar. His “Abantinagar” got him the prestigious Bankim Puroshkar in 2005. Swapnamoy Chakraborty received Ananda Puroshkar in 2015 for Holde Golap.
Dr. Nabakumar Basu is a UK based internationally acclaimed Bengali writer (and a medical doctor by profession). Dr. Basu evolved as a writer from the little magazine group and burst into the Bengali literature scene in 1977 with a short story in Desh, His classic novel “Chirasakha” was published in the prestigious Desh magazine as a serial over a period of nearly three years. He has authored 35 novels and over 200 short stories as well as numerous travelogues and thrillers. His famous works include Chirasakha, Juborani Diana, Nagarik, Rahasya Cha received the Sahitya Academy award r, Sreemoyee Maa, Hiya Porobash , Punorbashon. In 2015, he received the “Sera Bangali” award from NABC committee and “Aajkal” magazine. The translated version (in Oriya) of his famous novel “Sreemoyee Maa’ received the Sahitya Academy award in 2019.
Bithi Chattopadhyay is a noted poet of Bengali literature from Kolkata.
She started her literally career as a journalist and eventually switched to writing poems, short stories, novels etc. She is mainly recognized as a poet. Her first poem was published in the 'Desh Patrika' in 1995. Penned more than dozens of books. The time and the human race are the basic thoughts of her creations.
Honored with some prestigious awards, such as the Jugashankha Award in 2018, Sunil Gangopadhyay Memorial Award in 2013, The Bharat Nirman Award in 2005 etc. As a literary dignitary she has visited Sweden, America, Bangladesh, Canada and England. She writes for the children too. Some of her notable works are the “Srestha Kobita”, “Priobondhu Kolkata”, “Rupor Crush”, “Darao Pathikbar”. Etc
Kushanava Choudhury is an Indian American reporter and writer. After graduating from Princeton University he worked as a reporter for the “Statesman” the leading English newspaper in Calcutta. He went on to receive a PhD in Political Theory from Yale University before returning to Calcutta to write his first book The Epic City: The World on the Streets in Calcutta which was published by Bloomberg in 2017. Sifting through the chaos for the stories that never make the papers, Kushanava paints a soulful, compelling portrait of the everyday lives that make Calcutta, a city that is a world unto itself. William Dalrymple describes the book as a “beautifully observed love letter to Calcutta’s greatness” which “marks the arrival of a new star”.
Anis Ahmed has been working as Broadcast Journalist for twenty five years now, first with BBC London, then with VOA, Washington DC. Prior to this he was an Assistant Professor of English Language and Literature at Dhaka and Chittagong Universities. He did his Masters in English Literature from Dhaka University and later on in Applied Linguistics from the University of Aston in Birmingham, UK. He also worked with Dr William Radice in the School of Oriental & African Studies in London. He writes poems and has so far seven published books.
Dr Amrita Mukherjee, DO
Dr Amrita Mukherjee is a physician (General Practice) in USA, Florida, who works for homeless people. She worked for Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Shigella vaccine project. Honored Tau beta pi fellowship in 1996, Levy Burnett Research award in 2008, National Health Service Scholarship, 2015. She became a physician from NOVA South Eastern University NSUCOM, 2008. Amrita picks simple joys of life and presents to you with her own kaleidoscope of colorful imaginations. It's almost visual, palatable, touch worthy. She has 7 books published in last 2 years. Four of them are fictions in English, all much appreciated and celebrated in Amazon.com
Dr. Kaushik Sen, MD
Dr. Kaushik Sen, MD is an Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Kaushik has been intimately associated with Bengali diaspora literature and dramatics for more than 20 years. He publishes at online Bengali magazines and print media in West Bengal. He writes and directs Bengali dramas that have been staged all over North America at various Bengali festivals. His literary works have appeared regularly in many reputed Bengali magazines like Desh, Anandabazar, Sananda, Anandalok and Krittibas. So far he published 8 books including 5 novels, one short story collection, one book of poetry and a compilation of drama scripts. Kaushik lives with his wife Ananya, also a physician and dramatist at Raleigh, North Carolina.
Rudrasankar is a contemporary Bengali poet of the young generation. His poems have been published in several leading literary magazines and Bengali poetry collections in India, Bangladesh and other parts of the World. According to critics he is the first recognized atheist Bengali poet. Rudrasankar’s poetry is a sophisticated combination of self-reflections of everyday life. Some of his lyrical poems are converted into songs by popular singers. Elocutionists from West Bengal and Bangladesh often recite his poems. Rudrasankar was involved in editing the poem section of popular newspaper ‘Prothom Alo’. He has seven poetry books. He received a couple of awards including Bhasanagar award 2016 and Terminus boi-parbon award 2019 from Kolkata, India.
Tapas Kumar Ray
Tapas K Ray is an America based Bengali poet, a painter and a PhD in economics. Tapas received his training in fine arts from Kathryn Myers at the University of Connecticut. Like his paintings his poems are mostly influenced by his sense of existence. Though brazen, they reflect the same logical sense, and silently protest against human exceptionalism. His poetry is morphed by his overseas loneliness and his isolation in this exhibitionist society. His works have been published previously in Bengali magazines like Desh, Krittibas, Dukool and also been made into Bengali film songs. 'Ghor Khoja Sondhyara' is his first published poetry collection. Tapas is the key performer for All Shades Theater, a US based theater group. Along with his friends he co-owns Randomwalk Films, a production house producing niche films.