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Farewell, Mahatma by Devibharathi, translated by N Kalyan Raman, Harper Perennial

Farewell, Mahatma brings together ten tales that introduce us to the brilliance and distinctiveness of Devibharathi’s imagination and craft. These stories explore the dark and dichotomous realities of our history and present, our social and individual lives, probing themes such as freedom, desire, need and the volatile spaces between man and woman. At once unnerving and illuminating, this is short fiction at its best.

‘{Kalyan] Raman’s excellent English rendition of the soulful stories with all its inherent depth and underlying layers ensures that none of the original feelings, sentiments and sensitivity of the narrative is lost. Moreover, the ambience, atmosphere and the environment of each story is deftly portrayed.’ S. Ravi in The Hindu

‘…the English translation captures beautifully the idiomatic and cultural nuances of the Tamil original.’ Indira Parthasarathi in The Hindu

Devibharathi was born and raised in a village in western Tamilnadu, the second of five children in a schoolmaster’s family. He has worked as a political activist, a government employee, journalist, managing editor of a literary magazine and script-writer for television programmes. During a writing career spanning more than four decades, Devibharathi has published two collections each of short stories and novellas, four novels and two non-fiction anthologies comprising memoirs and essays. Farewell, Mahatmai is his first work of fiction to appear in English translation.

Shortlisted for Vodafone Crossword Book Award (Translations) 2016



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