Amit Chaudhuri was born in Calcutta in 1962. He was brought up in Bombay. He did his graduation from University College, London. After that he was a research student at Balliol College, Oxford. In later days he was Creative Arts Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford, and received the Harper Wood Studentship for English Literature and Poetry from St John's College, Cambridge. He has written many fictions, poetry and reviews to numerous publications including The Guardian, the London Review of Books, the Times Literary Supplement, The New Yorker and Granta magazine till now.
His first book, A Strange and Sublime Address, a novella and a number of short stories, won the Betty Trask Prize, the Commonwealth Writers Prize (Eurasia Region, Best First Book) and was short listed for the Guardian Fiction Prize as well. He was also awarded by Southern Arts literature prize and the Encore Award. Amit Chaudhuri is currently teaching Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia. He is editor of The Picador Book of Modern Indian Literature, published in 2001. His most recent book is St. Cyril Road and Other Poems and this has been published in 2005.
'A Strange and Sublime Address' by Amit Chaudhuri is a book won the Betty Trask Award in the year of 1991. This book contains nine stories featuring an Indian boy who spends his school holidays at his uncle's home in Calcutta. Heatwaves, thunderstorms, mealtimes, prayer-sessions, shopping expeditions and family visits create a shifting background to the shaping of people's lives. This book is mainly a colourful portrayal of life in Calcutta seen through the eyes of ten years old boy Abhi. The vivid descriptions are touched with humour as Abhi tries to make sense of the often confusing world of adults around him. Chaudhuri depicts his thoughts and feelings beautifully.
The writing is alive and imaginative as Abhi explores his world with a fresh mind, sometimes challenging age-old customs and traditions with an audacity that is hilarious. Here the author becomes like a ten years old boy to understand that wavelength. He watches the actions of the adults around him as though they are performing a play. He has mixed feelings in his role as the audience. Sometimes he does this out of fascination and sometimes out of disrespect. Small everyday events are given an enchanting quality as the writer describes them with wit and originality. The language is thick with the use of images, often giving the novel a poetic feel.
'A Strange and Sublime Address' by Amit Chaudhuri is published by the famous publication house Vintage. The new edition was published on 2nd April 1992.
In the 'A Strange and Sublime Address' by Amit Chaudhuri, the richness of Bengali culture is presented in a descriptive manner. The relations between various members of an extended family, the flavour and fragrance of Bengali food, prayer times and visits to relatives, all are portrayed with a touch of humour that amused the readers from the beginning to end. This book can drag the readers for the author's other creations.
(Last Updated on : 06-01-2009)
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