Jo Hona Tha Hona Tha, Jo Nahin Hona Tha Hona Tha: Poetry in Turbulent Times, HUG with 5 Poets in Varanasi
Poetry in Turbulent Times.
HUG in Varanasi, with Ashtabhuja Shukla, Pankaj Chaturvedi, Vyomesh Shukla, Avinash Mishra and Siddhant Mohan.
On the sidelines of the Hindi Yuva Kavi Sangam, 2016, held at Benaras (February 26-27, 2016), HUG met with five contemporary Hindi poets who nurture a strong sense of the aesthetic, political and philosophical struggles that rage in the deepest recesses of our land. The idea of the nation is naturally fractious in the arts, in poesie more so. In fact, civilization or nation make little sense in defining and then transforming our realities into art forms. For poetry addresses our times, sometimes by unleashing myths and metaphors, and at other times, through subtraction–starkly, wielding the precise markers of language in keen realization of what the moment might demand. And yet, communicating poetry also needs some kind of binding force, a register that is material and personal, even as we objectively see history unfolding through varied inflections in different parts of our land.
What do we expect from the conjurers of language in such troubled times as we live now? Should poetry say things simply and directly to power? Or should it instead seek refuge in the structures of the timeless and the transcendental? Is it possible to marshal a language that dares to take the challenge head on? What can be learnt and discarded from the older forms of poetry? How much is worth renewing? In the video links below, these five poets candidly talk about their convictions and art practice by historically situating the contemporary.
The whole discussion has been divided into three sections. Connect your system to the speakers and click on the individual links please :