The Samvatsar Lectures-XI delivered by Sri Nirmal Verma in two parts on Concept of 'Truth' in Art is a profound mixture of his deep erudition and experience as a writer. To Verma, a work of art does not communicate truth-it is the truth itself. It carries within itself multiple layers of meaning, coexisting or sometimes colliding. A work of art acquires the numinous quality of the sacred-a 'return' to the primal sense of our being. He strongly believes that the truth in art can never be governed by the evolutionary laws of progress. The progress in art is an illusion.
Man on earth is a fragile creature-incomplete, weak and vulnerable-but in a work of art, in a painting or in a piece of music or in a poem, he is able to get a fleeting glimpse of what can be called the 'advaitic' feeling of wholeness from which he has been exiled by the forces of history and the fragmentary nature of life.
About the Author:
NIRMAL VERMA (b. 1929) did his M. A. in History from Delhi University. Sri Verma is a well known writer in Hindi with over 16 books to his credit. He is also well versed in Hindi and Czech. His important works include Ve Din (novel), Lal Tin ki Chat (novel), Ek Chitraha Sukh (novel) Rat ka Reporter (novel), Parinde (short story collection), Kavve Aur Kala Pani (short story collection), Shabd Aur Smriti (essays), Cheeron Par Chandni (travelogue) and Teen Ekant (play). The several awards and honours he has received include the Sahitya Akademi Award (1986), Sadhana Samman (1994) and U. P. Hindi Sansthan Award (1995).
This is the eleventh lecture in Sahitya Akademi's series of 'Samvatsar' Lectures. These lectures were instituted in 1985 by a resolution of the Executive Board that accepted the recommendations of the Committee set up for the establishment of a series of lectures in literary criticism. A procedure was described by the Board for the selection of the annual Samvatsar lectures. The Samvatsar lecturer is expected to deliver two or three lectures on a theme chosen by him. It was also laid down that these Samvatsar lectures would be published after they are delivered. The crucial clauses in the resolution relating to the Samvatsar lectures read as follows:
These lectures should reflect a deep concern for values. They should open up a new vistas of thinking regarding a literary movement, a current literary trend, some original thinking about a great classic or a new path in literary criticism or literary creation, etc. The presentation should be from a larger perspective while the subject matter could be drawn from the regional or comparative sources within the speaker's experience.
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