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The Laghukatha : A Historical and Literary Analysis of a Modern Hindi Prose Genre - Ira Valeria Sarma

The Laghukatha

A Historical and Literary Analysis of a Modern Hindi Prose Genre

Hardcover Published: 12th December 2002
ISBN: 9783110175936
Number Of Pages: 356
For Ages: 22+ years old

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The book presented here is the first work of Western literary criticism to examine the Hindi laghukatha - a modern Indian prose genre that has been published since the 1970s in Hindi newspapers and magazines and is characterised by its concise form (500 words on average) and socio-political agenda. The importance of the genre within the Hindi literary scene lies in the fact that the laghukatha is based on indigenous genres which have been modernised, whereas the Hindi short story and the novel are Western genres that have been appropriated and Indianised.

A thorough investigation of around 280 primary texts accompanied by an evaluation of the relevant Hindi criticism gives a comprehensive literary analysis of this genre and its historical development. This allows, in conclusion, to delineate an "ideal type" of laghukatha, suggesting a range of compulsory, desirable and optional features. English translations of almost 50 representative Hindi texts complete the picture and thus provide an insight into this genre so far unknown to a Western audience.

Industry Reviews

"Sarma is a keen and attentive reader who brings out many interesting aspects in her analysis of the directness and rhetorical effect of the sampled texts. The argument in both the historical and literary analysis of Laghukatha is made with great clarity and insistence. The chapters on the language of Laghukatha show her in-depth technical understanding of the language and its literature, leading to an insightful analysis of the workings and structures of this genre."
Thomas de Bruijn in: South Asia Research 1/2007

Introductionp. 1
Historical developmentp. 5
State of research: contemporary approachesp. 5
Beginnings (before 1900)p. 11
The question of ancient and medieval antecedentsp. 11
Early stages: Bharatendu Hariscandrap. 17
The role of journalismp. 19
Transition into a modern genre (1900-1970)p. 23
'First' laghukathas (1900 - Independence)p. 25
Non-Hindi influences: Manto and Gibranp. 30
The 1950s and 60s: first collections and the emergence of the term 'laghukatha'p. 35
Modern laghukathasp. 38
The 1970s: the evolution of a new genrep. 39
Establishment of the laghukatha as an independent genrep. 43
The laghukatha writersp. 49
The authors' intentionsp. 51
Means of publicationp. 57
Literary analysisp. 61
State of research: approaches in Hindi laghukatha criticismp. 61
Methodologyp. 65
Contentp. 77
Themesp. 78
Protagonistsp. 116
Spacep. 137
Formp. 146
Outer form: shape and sizep. 147
Inner form: the plotp. 156
Titlep. 190
Points of viewp. 197
Stylep. 200
Diction and syntaxp. 202
Stylistic modes and tonesp. 232
Rhetorical figures and tropesp. 251
Conclusionp. 289
Bibliographyp. 296
Appendix: Laghukathas of the samplep. 308
Indexp. 323
Distribution of themesp. 115
Distribution of number of wordsp. 154
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9783110175936
ISBN-10: 3110175932
Series: Indian Philology and South Asian Studies
Audience: General
For Ages: 22+ years old
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 356
Published: 12th December 2002
Country of Publication: DE
Dimensions (cm): 23.17 x 16.1  x 2.39
Weight (kg): 0.64