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"The India Story" Seminar
Programme - LITERATURE


SESSION I – Kalidasa ( 500C.E.) and Rabindra Nath Tagore

A. Reading and analysis of Meghadutam ( The Cloud Messenger)

Introducing the Piece

  • Historical significance
  • Cultural background
  • Social settings
  • Particular features of the genre
  • Theme
  • Identify and understand the characteristics of the Myth.

B. The Indian Colossus - Rabindra Nath Tagore


  • The social reformation in Bengal
  • The Family, His early days
  • Gitanjali and The Nobel Prize
  • The story of the prize, competitors, proposer and a lost manuscript - The Spiritual impact on the West

Tagore's Oeuvre

  • Over 2800 songs with times from Hindustani Classical, Folk
  • Music, Carnatic Music, Maithili, Scotland, Ireland etc.
  • Novels, Short Stories, Plays, Dance Dramas, Poems ,Paintings
  • Essays on almost every aspect of life including Education, Social Reform, Spirituality
  • Lecture tours to USA, Europe, South America and Asia.

Tagore and modernity

This will be the main thrust of this session.
Tagore’s philosophy on:
Man and Nature
Globalization of the Human Spirit

SESSION II - Literature of Tamilnadu

  • Population and Migration to all parts of the world

  • Longest continuous written history

  • Major themes

  • Sangam Era dating to 3rd century BCE

  • Silapadikaram

  • Saint Thiruvalluvar’s “Thirukural”(1st and 3rd century CE)


A. Indians writing in English

An introduction to the works of Pulitzer Prize and Booker Prize winners

B. Creative Writing – Expressing each individual’s Philosophy of Life

  • Headlines or Captions
  • Essay
  • Personal review of the Selection
  • Diary/ Journal Entries
  • Poems
  • Autobiographical sketches

Days: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21