Monday, March 26, 2007

Five Days in Paris

Looking beyond English
(The Hindu, Monday, Mar 19, 2007)
NEW DELHI: There will be more than the usual Indian flavour in the French capital this month. While the taste of "desi'' cuisine may not have gained a foothold in Paris in a big way, but the more potent Indian literature promises to make its presence felt at the Paris Book Fair this month. The big names from the world of words may have already been recognisable, but Katha is trying to get the names of non-English literature noticed too.

With regional authors fighting for attention in the country, Katha is hoping to take this "mission'' beyond. Having nearly 300 writers in 21 languages, Katha really has access to the best stories in India.

The publishing house is hoping to introduce its French readers to a "star'' they may have not been really aware off -- Krishna Sobti. Considered the grand dame of Hindi literature, she has created strong women characters. Born before Independence in West Punjab in present-day Pakistan, she is known for her honesty and the way she looks at things. With many awards, she is a name that goes beyond the limits of language and Katha is hoping that it will achieve that by making her their author of focus.
- Mandira Nayar

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