Select Your Language



Penguin unveils five new English translations of Tamil maestro's best

Penguin unveils five new English translations of Tamil maestro's best


, Monday, 19 February 2024 (17:54 IST)
Penguin Random House India has unveiled the acquisition of five masterful works by the celebrated and recent JCB Prize for Literature awardee, Perumal Murugan.

Renowned for his literary prowess and insightful storytelling, these narratives have already garnered acclaim in Tamil literature and are now set to captivate the English-speaking audience as Penguin undertakes their translations for the first time. These works will be published separately over the next six years, marking a significant milestone in making Murugan's literary legacy accessible to a global readership.

Each of these books offers a culturally rich story to a wider audience, showcasing the depth and breadth of Murugan's storytelling skills.A Long Time, translated by Meena Kandasamy: Murugan weaves a tale of love, detachment, and familial complexities in this novel, showcasing his ability to delve into the human psyche.The Bed, translated by Kavitha Muralidharan: A short-story collection is a testament to his unique blend of humour and depth, exploring the evolving dynamics of Indian families with a focus on human-pet relationships.

Students Etched in Memory, translated by V. Ishwarya: The ability to offer poignant glimpses into the formative years of his characters, exploring the impact of education and societal challenges, is showcased in this collection of forty essays.There is Nothing that Wouldn't Change: Interview with Bezwada Wilson, translated by Kavitha Muralidharan: An insightful interview with award-winning Indian activist Bezwada Wilson demonstrates Murugan's commitment to shedding light on critical social issues, particularly his engagement with the fight against manual scavenging in India.The Land and the Shadows, translated by Gita Subramanian: Murugan skilfully reflects on the transformative decades of Tamil society, providing a unique perspective on the influence of cinema on his life and the changing cultural landscape.

Talking about a 5-book deal with Penguin, author, Perumal Murugan, says, ‘I deem it important to formalize a contract with Penguin for the simultaneous translation of my books into English. These comprise a novel titled Nedu Neram, a collection of short stories centered around pet animals, two books on films (which will be consolidated into a single volume in English), a book focusing on students who hold a special place in my heart, and an interview conducted with Bezwada Wilson. Personally, I am delighted that Penguin, a publisher with a history of releasing many of my novels, is now venturing to publish this unique set of books. This marks an unprecedented milestone for a Tamil writer, a classical language in India with a literary legacy spanning over two thousand years. I express my gratitude to the English-language readers who have made this endeavour possible and to Penguin for bringing these translations to the audience.’

He also adds, ‘Witnessing several books being translated simultaneously fills me, as a Tamil writer, with immense pride. Credit for these achievements goes to Kalachuvadu Kannan, my friend and publisher of my Tamil works. Over the years, he has consistently strived to introduce modern Tamil literature to English readers and has achieved a commendable level of success. My heartfelt gratitude goes out to him for his unwavering efforts.’

Manasi Subramaniam, Editor-in-Chief, Penguin Press, Penguin Random House India, says, ‘Murugan’s literary prowess is eclipsed only by his humility. This landmark five-book deal will not only bring his masterpieces to a wider readership in English but also contribute significantly to cultural exchange between Tamil and English literature worldwide. So close on the heels of his extraordinary win at the JCB Prize for Literature, I am delighted to be working with him once again.’

Milee Ashwarya, Publisher, Adult Publishing Group, Penguin Random House India, says, ‘Penguin Random House India has been home to Perumal Murugan and his works for several years. I am delighted to be publishing five new works by him which will give us an opportunity to showcase the range and depth of his writing.’(UNI)

Share this Story:

Follow Webdunia english

Next Article

'The Indus Quest' - A history-based political thriller by Ranjan Mitra