Westland to publish
BULLOCKS FROM THE WEST five punjai stories and a play
David Shulman and S Ramakrishnan
In the village of Punjai, the ordinary is magical in the eyes of Na Muthuswamy. Two bullocks arrive and a small boy with his little brother can’t wait to ride them until they’re broken in. He also remembers the oldest woman, the mystique of a widow who emerges like a ghost from the village pond every day. Then there is the delusional old man who sits at the tea stall for hours telling stories about the Chola court. And there is the devadasi Panchali, too, who volunteers to play Draupadi in a ritual disrobing at the temple.
Na Muthuswamy’s prose shines for his brilliant gaze, his ability to capture detail and create memorable characters and atmospherics.
The book ends with his iconic play England about the inequality that followed in India Independence; freedom came but not to all.
Na Muthuswamy is one of the most important Tamil writers and playwrights in India. He is the founder of the iconic Tamil folk theatre group Koothu-P-Pattarai in based in Chennai Muthuswamy, and has been described as the master of the avant-garde in Tamil literature. He has received the Padma Shri and the Sangeet Natak Akademi award, among many others.
David Shulman is regarded as one of the world’s foremost authorities on the languages of India. His research embraces many fields, including the history of religion in South India, Indian poetics, Tamil Islam, Dravidian linguistics, and Carnatic music. He is also a poet in Hebrew, a literary critic, a cultural anthropologist.He is a peace activist and a founding member of the joint Israeli-Palestininian movement Ta’ayush. In 2007 he published the book Dark Hope: Working for Peace in Israel and Palestine which concludes the years of his volunteering activity in the movement.
S. Ramakrishnan is Publisher of Cre-A Books and has co-translated the stories with David Shulman.
Imprint: Eka | Publisher: Westland | Price: INR 499 | Release: November 2018