Book

The Formation of Urdu Ghazal : the Origins of the Genre The Formation of Urdu Ghazal : the Origins of the Genre
The Formation of Urdu Ghazal : the Origins of the Genre The Formation of Urdu Ghazal : the Origins of the Genre

L. Vasilyeva

The Formation of Urdu Ghazal : the Origins of the Genre


Еditor: Natalya Prigarina

Institut vostokovedeniya RAN

Moskva, 2015, 382 pages

ISBN: 978-5-89282-647-1

This monograph is the first attempt by a Russian scholar to analyse the initial phase in the history of Urdu ghazal. Against a vast historical, ethno-cultural and linguistic background of medieval India, the book discusses major stages in the formation and early development of Urdu ghazal through the period of more than four centuries: first experiences in the North (fourteenth century), formation of the genre and its poetics in the South (fifteenth to early seventeenth century) and further development of ghazal in the North up to the beginning of classical period (seventeenth to mid-eighteenth century). Deep and multi-dimensional research into the emergence and evolution of ghazal discloses fundamental laws of literary process in the variety of its inter-textual and supra-textual connections. The analysis of the early phases of Urdu ghazal testifies to the unbreakable link of this genre with both Iranian literary models and primordial Indian cultural-literary tradition. The book collects, systematizes and interprets a vast bulk of ghazals, offering translations along with the original texts. Poetological analysis of the ghazals, accompanied by the explanation of complicated values, symbols and meanings, sometimes illegible for the bearers of other cultural traditions and at the same time vital for modern Urdu milieu as well, establishes the aesthetic validity of early Urdu poetry as known to the history of literature. Emphasis is made on the “biography” of Urdu language: it discusses the emergence and development of this language in various regions of pre-colonial India with special reference to the names given to this language on every stage of its “travels” throughout the subcontinent. The “Afterword” to the book deals with the Indian Mu’shaira, a phenomenon of Indo-Iranian synthesis, closely connected with the history and development of Urdu ghazal. The book is devoted to the memory of A.S. Sukhochev.

RUS