27 January, 2021

Age Of Innocence

A felicitous translation which captures the book's romance

Age Of Innocence

The author of Aparajito can't appear on television chat shows because he died nearly half a century ago. A book launch in the capital is out of question because no advance in hard currency's been offered for the book. The review circuit in London or New York has not told us what to think of this novel. Consequently one of the major fictional texts of our century is likely to remain unnoticed by the media even though it is available in English now. 

In the late '50s Satyajit Ray made three films based on two novels that had already become literary classics in Bangla. The English translation of the first, Pather Panchali (original '29) was published in '68, but it's taken its sequel Aparajito ('32) nearly seven decades longer. Surprisingly, despite the time lag, the English version retains much of the freshness of the original. Gopa Majumdar's prose has a transparent readability, although inevitably some of the sporadic lyricism of Bibhutibhushan's language is attenuated in translation. 

Aparajito traces the growth of an...



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