Author: Nirmal VermaTranslator(s)/ Editors(s): Alok BhallaPublisher: Indian Institute of Advanced StudyYear: 2000Language: EnglishPages: 175ISBN/UPC (if available): 8185952728
Nirmal Verma is a distinguished writer of fiction in Hindi. He is also a fine moral and political critic who risks making difficult engagements with each of the life-historical moments that have made the present social reality of India so bitter, in order to find more civilized modes of being human. His fiction explores the arid silence that lies between people who have lost faith in each other, the paralyzing stillness that keeps us apart even as we long for the grace of companionship, and the imaginative drought that renders it impossible for us to make moral discriminations. His essays, however, are not elaborations of his fictional world; they are not written to make what little sad sense they can out of contemporary political or literary practices in the country. They are, instead, small pilgrim paths discovered by a writer who is disenchanted with modernity; paths which lead back to the sources of Indian traditions where myths, words, gestures or precepts still have meanings and can sustain us in our moment of spiritual crisis.
Foreword Introduction 1. India: an unwritten epic. 2. The burning bough. 3. India and Europe: some reflections on the self and the other. 4. The self as a stranger. 5. Tradition and conflict. 6. Returning to one's country. 7. Home of man's being: some observations on language, culture and identity. 8. A tryst with humanity. 9. Humanism: illusion and reality. 10. The Indian culture and nation. 11. Concept of truth in art. 12. The writer and his audience. 13. Culture, time and the Indian novel. 14. Indian fiction and colonial reality. 15. Short story as a pure literary form. 16. From solitude to salvation: the paintings of Ram Kumar. 17. The India of my dreams.