Hyderabad: Shambhabi Imprint today at Oxford Bookstore Kolkata launched the book The Mark, authored by Bitan Chakraborty, who is best known as the founder of Hawakal Publishers. He is also an acclaimed story writer, translator, and editor of the Bengali print journal, Atibhuj. The book was formally released and discussed by Sharmila Ray, Sudeep Sen & Indrajit Bose. The occasion marked the presence of acclaimed poet Kiriti Sengupta, who is also an editor, translator, and publisher from Calcutta, Utpal Chakraborty, who is a teacher of English literature, translator and bilingual poet.
The afternoon culminated with conversations, lively discussions on literary work and insightful journey of authors, publishers and translators in the literary sector and the audience witnessed Hawakal launch its first imprint, CLASSIX, through the release of Sudeep Sen: Interviews which is a collection of selected conversations and interviews of Sudeep Sen, widely recognized as a major new generation voice in world literature and one of “the finest younger English-language poets in the international literary scene.” Jhilam Chattaraj, eminent academic, poet, and literary interviewer, was in conversation with Sudeep Sen for the event.
The book ‘The Mark’ is a collection of seven short stories by Bitan Chakraborty and translated from their original Bengali by Utpal Chakraborty. The collection enables readers to identify the often-ignored signs of day-to-day living. It also allows them to revisit memories, resulting in the revival of a few existential queries, buried in our hearts for years.
The story begins and ends on the same note, with the same trouble. Yet the full picture does not emerge until we endure the story with the characters. We become participants or observers of the action as we pick through its details. Bitan Chakraborty is not reacting against postmodern philosophy—instead, he is revealing a visionary approach to solving the impasse of the narrator by letting the story tell itself as well as inviting the reader’s surprise. The stories also have a uniquely crafted style. They create microcosms within microcosms—as if each twist runs parallel to the opening—like planets revolving around the sun by the law of gravity.
Sudeep Sen: Interviews contains a generous 350-page selection of the best conversations and interviews with the writer on his life and work, culled from over 30 years or so, which have appeared in newspapers, magazines, and journals around the world. Leading international and national scholars, critics, writers, and journalists have spoken to Sen in detail about the intricacies of his literary craft, about his preoccupations, interests, and obsessions. Taken together, the book reveals the important interior spaces and his creative and intellectual landscape of “one of India’s foremost poets.”
Sudeep Sen is widely recognized as a major new generation voice in world literature. “Writing poetry over so many decades in a world that values lucre over passion, fiction over poetry is an uphill task. To stick to a genre that does not easily find ready readership or publishers, for the most part, takes a mad kind of “courage” and a dogged “love [for] the art.” It is this that has allowed me to pursue poetry and all things related to poetry — the writing of it, translating, editing, publishing and supporting young writers. At the core of it, poetry gives me the greatest joy in my life,” writes Sen in the preface to the collection.