Monday, August 25, 2008

Sri Aurbindo considered nothing more futile than for a poet to write on expectation of contemporary fame or praise


The fact that Sri Aurobindo is one of the pioneers of Indian English critics grows more and more vibrant and authentic when one journeys through the works of him where he appears to be a chief living authority on Indo-English criticism. As he was supposed more a saint or Yogi than a poet or critic, he was not properly evaluated by Indian scholars with a viewpoint of critic but his works like The Future Poetry, On Himself, Essays Divine and Human and Letters on Poetry Literature and Art are replete with scholarly jottings on poetry literature and art.

Besides The Future Poetry, the most original and authentic work on criticism, carries practical aspects of poetic criticism. The criticism of Sri Aurobindo is perfect and exemplary because it is never too close to its time nor it neglects the findings of its predecessors but as his more inclination towards spirituality and God, his criticism is fumed with the tinge of spiritual colors also. In his terrestrial existence Sri Aurobindo played many parts the politicians, the poet, the critic, the philosopher, and the Yogi which in sum made him the Rishi Aurobindo. But his part of critic not only set milestones in the world of English criticism but also torch bore the path of new critic and poet...

Aurobindo lays much emphasis on writing one’s own original thoughts and forbids the Indian poets to imitate or follow some particular school of thought, because it was his own conviction that ‘writing in one’s own words what another has said or written is a good exercise or a test for accuracy, clear understanding of ideas, and observant intelligence but it is also imperative to understand English and express oneself in good English.Undoubtedly most of the observations of Sri Aurbindo on English and Indo-English poetry are sound and valid even today.

Unquestionably the capacities of Aurobindo are yet to acquire proper recognition specially in the terms of criticism where he stands alone with the theory of his own. In this term he can be regarded as critics’ critic for he was the first critic who hoped so much with the Indian English poets and authors, yet he considered nothing more futile than for a poet to write on expectation of contemporary fame or praise, however agreeable that may be, if it comes; but it is not of any definitive value... Posted by Dr Shaleen Kumar Singh at 12:35 PM Friday, August 22, 2008

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