INFO ON ANTHOLOGY
“KAVITA KA GAON”
by SHEO NARAYAN SINGH ANIVED
Since the last featured book was a book of bilingual poetry we found it interesting to inform our readers of yet another book of poetry written both in English and Hindi. However there the similarity ends. Comparisons are odious and we leave it to the readers to read the poems on the poet's website and come to their own conclusions. We reproduce below the poets own description of his anthology of verses - not ours.
The anthology “KAVITA KA GAON” takes us to a journey of post-modern multiplicity of realities of contemporary post-liberalization Indian life unmasking the hidden truth of our everyday existence. These poems inspire and motivate us to deal with “manufactured uncertainties” of modernity. Poet unravels different dimensions of social reality touching upon the economy, the nation-state, ethnicity, region, gender and class. It is this economic, political and cultural mix, enhanced by new media, that gives the postmodern its social referents. The poet brings into these poems the visual aesthetic images of a painter and critical insight of a cultural critique. All the poems together connect us with bigger story as to what ‘Postmodern practice’ might mean in management, social work, teaching or law.
In these poems, we see a new type of Indian society appearing, perhaps structured around consumers and consumption. Consumerism and consumption are central post-modern motifs. We have become what we consume. Poet shows the impact of consumerism on young village woman, splitting into modern women in poem “Split Women”. It is one way of seeing the postmodern where it becomes a debate about reality and motifs of modernity. Poem “Third World War” depicts the modern industrial order giving way to new organizing principles structured around knowledge, information and communication technologies (CITs) of the ‘global village’. But in this ‘information age’, the coherence of individual ‘societies’ is undermined, as global social relations erode an older sense of time and space. Here a new kind of society is coming into being, whose contours can already be perceived dimly in poems like “The Changing India”, “The Pain of New India” and “Doors of Liberation” .
Poem “Death of the Century” refers above all to the exhaustion of modernity spanning two centuries from Years 1789-1989 which became the symbolic two centuries span of modernity, expressed politically as the quest for a rationalized world – from the French Revolution to the fall of bureaucratic state socialism. “Death of the Century” expresses the death of these two centuries of modernity. Post-1989 is the period of resurgence of liberal capitalism, a renewal that has eliminated the communist alternative and valorized the individual enjoyment of goods and services as depicted in poems like “Far From Life”, “KAVITA KA GAON” and “Moon”. These poems show the ill effects of consumer society, where everything is a show, a spectacle. “The Truth” shows the increasingly alienated individual, frustrated in the quest for genuine individuality. “The Speed”, “The Changing India”, “The Ultimate Identity” depict the New India swinging from deep euphoria to deep despair expressing the rise of identity as a source of meaning and the crucible of culture in the age of consumer capitalism where time is speeding up, and space is opening up in post-traditional India. The metropolis has migrated to the malls in “Pain of New India”. Malls have become language of hyperbole and symbol of New India in place of easy familiarity of the neighbourhood shop owner.
“Far from Life” expresses metropolitan existence – where we are distancing ourselves from relationships that might be overly intimate. Modern life being marked more by formal and contractual relations depicting new social isolation and fragmentation - modernity seen here as a mess. ‘Chakravyuh’ shows disenchantment of the world as people become enslaved to supposedly metropolitan consumption. “The Truth” (shows that urban space is clean and orderly, but it is socially and spiritually dead due to twin factors of mobility and migration. “Resistance” “Entrapment, and “Celebration of Darkness” depict the machine-like systems we now inhabit. Though these systems have emancipated us from feudal social orders, but they have confined us to ‘the solitude of our own hearts’. ‘Melancholy, long, withdrawing roar’ – is what we see in poem “To be or Not to be in a void” – a postmodern paralysis not only recutting ties with the past, but also breaking with the future. “Kagaj Ka Vish” places greater emphasis on the actions and reflexivity of human age(nts in challenging and changing power relationships. The ‘Soul lives on’ , “The Eternal love”, “The Magician of Canvas” and “Will for Life” show ways of overcoming the contradictions of modernity - striving to elevate inner lives of individuals.
To conclude with, Poet filters all his experiences as a man hailing from village, grandson of a freedom fighter, a Civil servant, a national awardee artist, a socio-cultural critique and comes out with clear vision of what we are today and how we can enhance our self-understandings to motivate us to enhance our self-actualization by separation and emergence from and objectification of the world in order to transform it as a Subject transforming concrete objective reality thereby unveiling untested feasibilities-potentialities of complete humanization of life. The Poet sees world not as a static entity but as reality in process, in transformation, overcoming depersonalization, self-depreciation, alienation and dehumanization of modern life. Sheo Narayan Singh Anived emerges as a unique poetic motivational guru – who is pioneer in using poetry as motivational mantras – combining Kabir’s “Atmagyan bina Jag Jhootha” and Erich Fromm’s invocation of “man’s main task is to give birth to himself”. By virtue of multi-dimensional and interdisciplinary background of poet, anthology “KAVITA KA GAON” helps us to unpack the mysteries of the life we live in and thus motivate us to manage the changing world and reality effectively to achieve excellence in our respective spheres of life.
Book is accessible on poet’s website http://www.sheoanived.com/
· Education : M.A. (Economics and Management), University of Manchester, U.K.
· Sheo Narayan Singh Anived is a senior Civil Servant belonging to 1983 batch of Indian Customs & Central Excise Service. He is presently working as Commissioner of Customs, Central Excise & Service Tax, Lucknow.
· A recipient of Lalit Kala Akademi National Award for Painting, he is also a well known poet, socio-cultural critique and a poetic motivational guru. He has won as much acclaim for his creative talent as for his intellectual discourses on socio-cultural issues.
· He has four publications to his credit –
i) 'Kavita Ka Gaon' published by Vani Prakashan, New Delhi, 2008.
ii) ‘Adhunik Bharat Ki Dwanda Katha’ published by Vani Prakashan, New Delhi, 2005.
iii) “Deconstructing the Hegemony of the State : Dialectics of Domination And Resistance”, published by Nehru Memorial Museum & Library, New Delhi, 2003.
iv) ‘Cosmic Celebration’, published by Shahjahan Art Gallery, New Delhi, 1997.
· In addition, many of his articles and essays on socio-cultural issues have also been published in various leading journals and newspapers of India in English as well as in Hindi.
· Besides, he has participated in Solo as well as Group Art Exhibitions, Seminars, Poetry Readings and motivational lectures in country and abroad, including international exhibition of paintings, “Self-reflexivity of Detraditionalization” at Nehru Centre, London.
· He has travelled abroad extensively and participated in various international conferences relating to Education, Culture and Taxation.
He has also held the post of Deputy Secretary in the Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India during 1994-1998.
Editor: Manohar Khushalani
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