Straddling two cultures

Jayanta Mahapatra, poet and physicist, has had a remarkable career. Widely heralded as one of the finest English language poets in the country- and indeed, the first to be awarded the Sahitya Akademi prize- Mahapatra taught physics till 1986 at several colleges in Orissa, including Ravenshaw in Cuttack.

A poet who came to his calling relatively late in life- at the age of thirty eight by popular account- Mahapatra has been prolific, and has earned considerable popular recognition.

Authorpress, the publishing house based in New Delhi, has brought out
The Lie of Dawns: Poems 1974 - 2008, a well produced collection of poems chosen by Mahapatra, dedicated to his wife Runu. Mahapatra has been called the "finest multicultural poet writing in India" and here he brings his own choice of the finest poems he has written over past thirty five years. A revelatory selection for readers who are familiar with his work, and for readers who are coming upon his impressive poetic achievement for the first time.

2009 was a very good year in many ways for Mahapatra. In addition to the publication of The Lie of Dawns, he received the SAARC literary Award, the Allen Tate Poetry Prize, an honorary doctorate from Ravenshaw University, and the Padma Shree Award from the President of India.

This and other books of poems by Mahapatra in our Poetry section, Rs 395, ISBN 9788192734749.

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