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Indian Poets Writing In Kannada
Gopalakrishna Adiga, Ramachandra Sharma and others

Gopalakrishna Adiga (1918-98) --- Modernism came into Kannada poetry in a potent manner in the late 1940s and AdigaGopalakrishna Adiga was its great harbinger. He was born in Mogeri, Kundapur Tk, S. K. district, Karnakaka. He obtained a Master's degree in English literature from Mysore University. He joined the academic profession and held the position of Principal, Lal Bahadur College, Sagar (1964-68) and Poorna Prajna College, Udipi (1968-71). He also worked as Deputy Director (Editorial) in National Book Trust, India. For some time, he functioned as the editor of Saakshi magazine. He authored a number of publications, which include Bhavataranga, 1946, Bhoomi Geetha, 1959,  Vardhamana, 1972 and Idanna Bayasiralilla, 1975 (poetry). He also wrote a novel, Anathe, 1954 and a book of critical essays, Mannina Vasane, 1966. His Samagra Kavya (Collected Poems) was published in 1976.   is the pioneer of the modernist movement in Kannada poetry. He led the Navya (New / Modernist) movement, which was inspired by the literary modernism of the European literary tradition. Indian independence in 1947 brought with it the promises of freedom and a new genre sprouted in Kannada poetry. The torchbearer of this tradition was Gopalakrishna Adiga. The Navya poets wrote about the disillusionment and angst of the times. The sophistication in the use of language and the importance of technique to poetry reached new heights in this genre. Even in the perspective of Navya with its Western impact,  Adiga's innovativeness and the ability for re-harnessing elements of Indian tradition have to be noted. Adiga's modernism also highlighted the individualistic experience of the Indian middle-class and its aspirations and ideologies. But it was not limited there. As Sumateendra Nadig has observed,  Adiga's writings "reflected humanity".  Ramachandra Sharma and other major poets of Kannada have carried the post-Adiga literary tradition forward. The Bandaya (the rebel) and the Dalita (the oppressed) movements followed the Navya in Kannada. But the stature of Gopalakrishna Adiga as the great master of Kannada poetry remains undiminished. Adiga received the B M S Gold Medal for Poetry from Mysore University (1941), Karnataka Sahitya Academy award (1973),  Sahitya Akademi award (1974) for his collection of poems, Vardhamaana, and the Kabir Samman awarded by Madhya Pradesh Government. He was honoured, posthumously, with Pampa Prashasthi (1993) by Karnataka Government.

B.C. Ramachandra Sharma (1925-2005) ---  Ramachandra Sharma was a psychologist and educationist.  He had lived in Ethiopia, England and Zambia before returning to India in 1982. His oeuvre includes eight collections of poems, four collections of short stories, four plays and two books of non-fiction.  Among the honours he received are the Kailasam award and the Sahitya Akademi award (1998) for his collection of poems, Saptapadi.

G. S. Shivarudrappa --- G. S. Shivarudrappa did his Ph D under Kuvempu and the topic was Soundarya Sameekshe. He was a Professor of Kannada. He is the recipient of Pampa Prashasti award (1997), Kuvempu Award (2005) and A. Na. Kru. Nirman Award (2006). He received Sahitya Akademi award (1984) for Kavyartha Chintana (Literary criticism). He has been conferred an honorary doctorate degree by Mysore University.

Chandrasekhar Kambar (b. 1938) --- Chandrasekhar Kambar is a  playwright, poet and novelist. He received the award of the Sangeet Natak Akademi (1983). His Jokumaraswamy was given Natya Sangha Award as the best play of the year in 1975 and Sirisampige (Play) got the Sahitya Akademi Award (1991). He held the positions of Vice-Chancellor of Kannada University and Chairperson of National School of Drama (1996-2000).

Lankesh (1935-2000) --- P. Lankesh served as Lecturer for some time. Apart from poetry, he wrote short stories, novels, plays and criticisms. Among his works are Sankranti, Teregalu and Tale Danda.  In 1970’s he had launched a Kannada weekly, Lankesh Patrike, which mostly catered to intellectuals, with focus on social and political issues. His film titled Pallavi won him Rashtra Prashasti State Award . His book Kallu Karaguva Samaya, a short story collection, brought in the Sahitya Akademi Award (1993).

Siddalingaiah (1954) --- Siddhalingaiah was born in Magadi in southern Karnataka. He studied in Bangalore to acquire his MA and Ph.D degrees. He did his doctoral thesis on Graama Devathagalu (Village Gods). He has published three volumes of poems (Holemadiagara Hadu, Savirary Nadigalu and Kappu Kadina Hadu), two plays (Panchama and Ekalavya) and two collections of essays (Avatharugalu and Hakkinota). He was a founding member and ideologue of Karnataka Dalit Sangharsha Samiti. He received the Karnataka Rajyotsava Award in 1986 and Best Film Lyricist Award of Karnataka Government for 1983-84.

H S Shivaprakash (1954) ---- H S Shivaprakash is currently Associate Professor, School of Arts and Aesthetics in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He published collections of poems, Malebidda Nadalli (1991) and Anukshna Charite (1991) and plays,  Sultan Tippu (1986), Mahachaitra (1990), Maranayakana Drishtanta (1991), and Manteswamy Katha Pasanga. As a playwright,  Shivaprakash has  received Satyakama Prashasti (2003). 

Prathibha Nandakumar (1955) --- Bangalore-based Prathibha Nandakumar holds MA (Kannada) and M Phil degrees. She is  a journalist, poet, short story writer, translator, playwright, columnist, script writer and documentary filmmaker. She has five collections of poems, an anthology of short stories, a volume of essays, translated stories, short plays for children and biographies. She is a columnist for Kannada Prabha. She has received several awards including Dr Shivaram Karanth Prashasthi (1999), the Karnataka State Sahitya Academy Prashasthi (2000) and the Mahadevi Varma Kavya Samman (2003).

 

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