(Last Updated on : 28/11/2012)
Renaissance in Indian literature includes several significant creative works of renowned authors. Indian literature as a whole experienced a new beginning with the Hindu Renaissance in the beginning of mid 19th century. Mostly centred on the Bengal province, eminent authors like Rabindranath Tagore
, Sarat Chandra Chatterjee
and Bankim Chandra Chatterjee
contributed significantly in the renaissance in Indian literature
by establishing a literary genre of the nation, no more the borrowed tongue. Renaissance is basically considered as an inspiration from the past and planning to rebuild the future. Thus, in this respect the renaissance in the life of "a nation is like the coming of a new age. It is adolescence turning, into adulthood: romanticism and revolution replaced by reason, narcissism followed by disillusionment" freed from the religious bigotries, blind faiths towards a new dawn of rationalism, positivism.
Over the past few decades, the socio-political landscape of the country has changed drastically and there has been an atmosphere of spring clearance. The rural scene of the country also experienced changes with abundant harvests, more production, bonded labour and untouchability being, branded as heinous crimes, family planning reaching every needy door, dowry being banished and emergence of strong, concerned youth power. All this and more has its repercussions on Indian writing also. More writers are budding from the classes of peasants and workers especially the from the backward Dalit class. With the passage of time, more commercially motivated persons invaded the fields of publication and film making and journalism and with the printing press having its strong foot hold amidst rationalized Indians, literature indeed saw a breath taking rise. Renaissance in Indian literature introduced a different style of Indian writing in different regional languages which is regarded as worthwhile and meaningful, writings of young writers, new experiments and exploration of new forms and ideas. Indian literary works started to depict the life of the poor and the depressed. In Bengali literature
, the prose-poem gained popularity, the blank verse. Further, some poets have travelled the road of propagandists using the broadcast media for poetic plays and other documentaries on current relevant topics.
The 'Renaissance' signifying 'rebirth' originated in Italy roughly between 14th and 17th century, was primarily a cultural uprising. But in India, renaissance originates as a social reform movement, probably in the nineteenth century, when the British were the domineering body of the Indian politics. Renaissance in India, materialised as a concept imitated from the West, punctuate a social reshuffling. Indian renaissance
appears as a reawakening of the latent society, quivering with the threats of orthodoxy, dowry and narrow caste system. Moreover foreign colonialism at that time was an intense blight over India. Several social uprising and organisations were developed to liberate the society from the shackles of superstition. Quite visibly, literature composed during this period is the clear specimen of the socio-political ethos of the era.
: Bengali Literature enthused with immense revolutionary zeal was instrumental for the reconstruction of the quiescent society of the time. It was the Bengali literature, which installed the very basis of literary and social development all over the country.
: Hindi Literature of the time was the authentic replica of the splendid antique traditions with a touch of lenient and rhythmic prose.
South Indian Literature
: Steeped in Renaissance tradition, South Indian Literature mainly underscores the human behaviour and situation.
: Urdu Literature was however shifted from stimulating any social reforms rather it showed propensity for the cultural revitalisation.
In India, during the last few decades a new phase has been witnessed prominently and markedly sweeping through all literary output as an impact of the renaissance. It is the change in the language of the writer. Morality is rapidly changing, with growing urbanisation and industrialisation. Hence, as a result of the renaissance in Indian literature this sudden explosion of the writers mainly concern about the future of their nation. What started as translation literature, culminated into writing in colonial tongue. Moreover, scientific mindedness is in the air and science fiction has become an absorbing new field. However, Indo-Anglican writing has not responded fully to the changing reality as readily as has been seen in Indian languages. Rather than a temporary phase of reformation, renaissance symbolically pinpoints at the enlightenment of the mind, and that indeed is a constant factor, an ongoing process.