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HINDI

Modern Hindi poetry

CHAYAVADOTTAR HINDI KAVITA — Ek Antaryatra: Madhubala Nayal; Granthayan, Sarvoday Nagar, Sasni Gate, Aligarh-202001. Rs. 400.

MODERN HINDI has made great strides after its adoption as India's official medium. Its literary development has been identified by Hindi scholars in successive stages of its orientation from an early narrative-descriptive versification followed by imaginative romantic poetry (called chaayaavad) and later to progressivist-socialist (pragativaad) experimentalist (prayogavaad) tendencies culminating in new poetry and non-poetry and further labels like contemporary poetry and reflective poetry.

All these labels obviously are coloured by the times and the tendencies of English poetry of the periods discussed in critical writings on them, which formed part of the staple food of the college- going and the intelligentsia in the country, including the Hindi belt, in those days.

In actual practice however, the Hindi writers of various periods exhibit no adherence to the labels that critics have made popular. They follow their multi-faceted traditional and non-traditional motivations while being responsive to the prevailing cultural situations.

The fact about the development of the Hindi muse is that the latter half of the period between the two World Wars provided an atmosphere of recuperation favouring the rise of great writers of the romantic style similar to the revival of English poetry by Wordsworth, Coleridge and Keats. The output of post-romantic poetry from the later 1949 to date is enormous and very diverse contrary to the official labels given by critics.

In this book the author deals with the content of the corpus, choosing texts of notable writers as illustrative material, in four chapters.

She has thus made a valiant effort to reduce a mass of verse material to its essentials and is aware of the inherent shortcomings in such an effort. To a great extent she has succeeded in highlighting the complexities of the latter half of the 20th Century Hindi writers.

J. PARTHASARATHI

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