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Poetry reading and reflection “Does the poet un-conceal? – Poet’s world and poet’s ways of knowing”

December 6, 2016

poetry-reading-and-reflection-does-the-poet-un-conceal-poets-world-and-poets-ways-of-knowing-at-bangalore-international-centrePoetry reading and reflection “Does the poet un-conceal? – Poet’s world and poet’s ways of knowing”
Bishnu Mohapatra
Odiya Poet and Social Theorist

Chair and Moderator
Abhijit Sengupta
Former Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India

Organized by Bangalore International Centre (A TERI Initiative)

About the reading and reflection
The best way to introduce this poetry reading by celebrated Odia poet Bishnu Mohapatra is in his own words:

“I do social science in English; write my poetry in Odia. Sometimes my poetry and social science remain as two isolated processes: silent, looking inward, flowing at their own pace, immersed in their own music. At other times they are braided, entangled and speak to each other as good friends. It is not merely that I use different languages to do distinct things. Rather, these are different domains of cognition and affect I inhabit – my way of being in the world.

“Does the poet know the world any differently? The many ways of knowing are quite clearly structured in hierarchies – some claiming ‘superiority’ over others. Within this overarching context of how the world is grasped, what does the poet un-conceal? Do poets, like philosophers, seek ‘truth’? Are they burdened by an aspiration to ‘get things right’? Through readings of my poetry interspersed with reflections, I uncover my very different ways of ‘knowing’.”

About the poet
Bishnu Mohapatra is a social theorist and poet. He was educated in Odisha, Delhi and Oxford. Trained in Politics, he has a strong academic interest in history, philosophy and literature. Taught politics for nearly two decades in University of Delhi and Jawaharlal Nehru University. He has held visiting appointments /fellowships at the National University of Singapore, University of Kyoto, Japan, Maison des sciences de l’ homme, Paris. Lectured at several universities in Europe, North America and Africa. He headed the governance portfolio of the Ford Foundation’s South Asia office in Delhi from 2002-2010. Bishnu is currently at National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), Bangalore as a visiting professor.

Bishnu is a well- known Indian poet who writes in Odia. He has authored four books of poetry and has translated two volumes of Pablo Neruda’s poetry into Odia. A volume of his poetry in English translation – A Fragile World – was published in 2005. His poetry is translated into many Indian and European languages. He enjoys sharing his poetic works with others, and was invited to read his poetry in many cities including, Bali, Bangalore, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Bombay, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Johannesburg, Kathmandu, Mexico City, Mumbai, Mysore and Singapore. He is in the process of completing a volume of Rilke’s poetry in Odia translation and a collection of poems that deals with his meditation on ‘rain’.

About Abhijit Sengupta

Abhijit Sengupta was a member of the Indian Administrative Service and retired in 2008 as Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Government of India. He has a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, and in English Literature from Delhi University. He received the prestigious Pearson fellowship of the IDRC, Canada in 1984-85 to study Public Administration. Among the positions he has held are Additional Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and DG, Anti-Dumping, and Joint Secretary, Department of Space, in the Government of India and Principal Secretary, Health, and Secretary, Finance in the State Government.

Abhijit Sengupta was Chairman of the High Powered Committee of the Ministry of Culture to review the functioning of various cultural institutions. He has been a member of the Central Advisory Board on Culture and of the Governing Body of Kalakshetra, Chennai. He was also the Chairman of the Task Force on Health for the Results Framework Document, Government of Karnataka.

Friday | 9th December 2016 | 6:30 PM

Bangalore International Centre
TERI Complex,
4th Main, 2nd Cross,
Domlur II Stage,
Bangalore – 560 071.

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