The English translation of the book came out on 20th January 2020. It has been published by Indian Penguin Modern Classics.
Kunwar Narain’s unusual short stories broke new ground and rejuvenated the genre when they appeared on the Indian literary landscape in 1971. Half a century later, in vivid English translation for the first time, they seem just as far-reaching: sometimes in the novelty of their insight, sometimes in their transcendence, sometimes in the world views they together uncover.
By turns allegorical, satirical, poetic, poignant, playful and bizarre, Narain’s layered, often deceptively simple tales unravel the existential and moral bewilderments of a society navigating the cold, cruel worlds of its own creation, while also allowing hope in the truly human. These bold, sometimes comic, often experimental and metaphysical stories weave love and otherness, fantasy and history, tenderness and silence, leaving us both restive and redeemed at once.
About the author:
Born in 1927 Kunwar Narain was an iconic figure in Indian literature, is regarded as one of the finest writers and thinkers of modern time. He read widely, across literatures and disciplines, and blended an international sensibility with a grounding in Indian history and thought. He has written in diverse genres of poetry and prose, including three epics recognized as classics of Indian literature, poems across eight collections, translations of poets like Cavafy, Borges, Herbert and Rózewicz, two short story collections, criticism, essays, memoirs, and writings on world cinema, ideas and the arts.
About the translators:
Apurva Narain: He is Kunwar’s son and translator into English.
John Vater: holds an MFA in literary translation from the University of Iowa. He lived in India while researching Hindi literature as a Fulbright-Nehru student scholar, and in 2018 was selected as an emerging translator from the US to attend the Banff International Literary Translation Centre residency in Canada.