Today's Page: August 7th
Rabindranath Tagore, Vladimir Sorokin, and Betsy Byars are the acclaimed authors who were born or died on a day like this.
Rabindranath Tagore, sobriquet Gurudev, was a Bengali polymath who reshaped his region's literature and music. In translation his poetry was viewed as spiritual and mercurial; his seemingly mesmeric personality, flowing hair, and other-worldly dress earned him a prophet-like reputation in the West. His "elegant prose and magical poetry" remain largely unknown outside Bengal. Tagore introduced new prose and verse forms and the use of colloquial language into Bengali literature, thereby freeing it from traditional models based on classical Sanskrit. He was highly influential in introducing the best of Indian culture to the West and vice versa, and he is generally regarded as the outstanding creative artist of modern India. A Pirali Brahmin from Calcutta, Tagore wrote poetry as an eight-year-old. At age sixteen, he released his first substantial poems under the pseudonym Bhānusiṃha ("Sun Lion"), which were seized upon by literary authorities as long-lost classics. He graduated to his first short stories and dramas—and the aegis of his birth name—by 1877. As a humanist, universalist internationalist, and strident anti-nationalist he denounced the Raj and advocated independence from Britain. As an exponent of the Bengal Renaissance, he advanced a vast canon that comprised paintings, sketches and doodles, hundreds of texts, and some two thousand songs; his legacy endures also in the institution he founded, Visva-Bharati University. Author of "Gitanjali" and its "profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse", he became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. Tagore passed away on a day like this in 1941, aged 80.
Vladimir Georgievich Sorokin, born on a day like this in 1955 in Moscow, is a contemporary postmodern Russian writer and dramatist, one of the most popular in modern Russian literature. In 1972 he made his literary debut with a publication in the newspaper. Throughout the 1970s, Sorokin participated in a number of art exhibitions and designed and illustrated nearly 50 books. Sorokin’s development as a writer took place amidst painters and writers of the Moscow underground scene of the 1980s. In 1985, six of Sorokin’s stories appeared in the Paris magazine A-Ya. In the same year, French publisher Syntaxe published his novel "The Queue". Sorokin's works, bright and striking examples of underground culture, were banned during the Soviet period. His first publication in the USSR appeared in November 1989. In September 2001, Vladimir Sorokin received the People's Booker Prize; two months later, he was presented with the Award of Andrei Bely for outstanding contributions to Russian literature. In 2002, there was a protest against his book "Blue Bacon Fat", and he was investigated. One of his recent novels, "Day of the Oprichnik", describes dystopian Russia in 2028, with a Tzar in the Kremlin, the Russian language with numerous Chinese expressions, and a "Great Russian Wall" separating the country from its neighbors.
Betsy Cromer Byars, born on a day like this in North Carolina, is an American author of children's books. Byars has been called "one of the ten best writers for children in the world" by Nancy Chambers, editor of the British literary journal Signal, and in 1987 Byars received the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement from the Catholic Library Association. Due to the popularity of her books with children, she has also been listed as one of the Educational Paperback Association's top 100 authors. Her novel "Summer of the Swans" won the 1971 "Newbery Medal". She has also received a National Book Award in category Children's Fiction for "The Night Swimmers"v(1980) and an Edgar Award for "Wanted ... Mud Blossom" (1991).
Id : 145674