Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The man with the magic pen

My favourite classes during my school years, especially in my primary school were English’s. I used to look forward for them everyday and come alive with the stories they told and carry their message in my heart.
I enjoyed each one of them, from stories written by greats R. L. Stevenson, Charles Lamb, Hans Christen Anderson, Mark Twain, Wordsworth, Lewis Carroll, etc to historical anecdotes and famous folk-lore. Though they were merely names and interesting stories put together in our reader to us back then, I realise now what precious gems of English literature the Board had collected to enhance our linguistic skills and understanding.
But one name which never failed to capture my attention and whose stories fascinated me the most was Mulk Raj Anand. For me, at that tender age of 6 or 7, oblivious of the fame any of these names enjoyed and such other great’, finding an English story written by an Indian was as astonishing as finding the wonderland would have been for Alice or the Neverland for Peter; as my tender mind had courted a strong notion till then that only an English could write in English.
I recall Mulk Raj Anand’s stories usually centred around every-day occurrences, Indian culture and traditions and simple meanings, but i was still so impressed by his style and the topics he addressed, that he became my favourite writer and when i realised (as years passed) as to what a great author he truly was, my admiration of him only alleviated.
Surely, he was a man with a magic pen, for his stories not only touched the reader’s soul, but left a lasting impression in their lives. Characters created by him like Baakha of “The Untouchables” and the protagonist in “The Coolie” has become unforgettable in Indian literature. One of the early writers in English from India to attain international repute, his writings not merely addressed the common mass but also challenged the British rule in India, and also brought about a radical change in India’s social structure, eliminating social evils and shaking the grounds of deep-rooted blind-beliefs.
So today, on his 108th birth anniversary, I dedicate this all new series of my blogs to him, whose style of writing established a life-long rendezvous with the beautiful language and art of writing for me, and in whose magical world of stories, i found my dream.


  1. Nice write up !!! thanks for sharing , keep it up !!!

  2. Thank you Asma for sharing this. In our pursuit of literature and language we tend to look outward and never inward, to the richness authors from our country contribute to English language.

    Besides richness of language they enrich us with our culture which we are losing knowledge of.

    Thanks once again for sharing this. Wish you well and keep blogging................who knows the next Indian author is hidden in you.

    Best wishes Sunny

  3. Beautiful! It's great when a writer inspires another writer. Seems to be an innate gift for you Asma. :) <3