BANGALORE: Four writers, Sanjukta Bandyopadhyay, Chitra Mudgal, Vaidehi and Paramita Satpathy, representing Bengali, Hindi, Kannada and Oriya literature respectively, on Tuesday gave expression to pressing human issues and the plight of women in the face of a changing social order and conflicting social values.
Participating in a literary session, “My World, My Writing”, organised by the Sahitya Akademi and chaired by the writer Shashi Deshpande here, the four writers presented their views by way of poetry, short story, extempore and essay.
Reciting her poem loaded with imageries of “shadow” and “light,” Ms. Bandyopadhyay attempted to explore the mind of a poet and the process of becoming a poet that would directly interact with history, the human predicament, literary traditions, politics, ethics, aesthetics and social responsibilities.
Expressing herself through a short story, Ms. Mudgal spoke of two worlds, the public and the private, that could have multiple interpretations such as urban and rural, family and individual, passion and tradition and personal preoccupation and marital life in the course of a woman’s literary pursuits.
Emphasising the fast-changing social scenario and family relationships, she said that her conviction was that answers to issues could be found in “hearts and not brains”.
Ms. Vaidehi said her experiences before and after marriage took her on a journey from the conservative world of Kundapur to the liberal world she found in Shimoga. It was her understanding that women had been neglected or overlooked by a male-dominated society, she said.
“I entered a world with a liberal outlook in which I could watch films along with my husband and my mother-in-law, talk about issues with an open mind, enter into a dialogue with others and expand my inner world on a par with the outer world. Today the entire coastal area has become a cauldron of communalism that serves no human purpose. It is the defeat of humanity,” Ms. Vaidehi said.
Ms. Satpathy gave vent to her thoughts in an essay that attempted to record her observations of a poet’s inner realities, social obligations, confidence, aberrations, loneliness and struggle.
Summing up, Ms. Deshpande said that women should address all issues that disturbed them and society by writing with equanimity.