'The Plays of Sankaradeva' released
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, April 23: The transliteration and English translation of all six plays of Srimanta Sankaradeva by Dr Yashodhara Medhi, titled ‘The Plays of Sankaradeva’, was released at Vivekanda Kendra in the city on Sunday.
Releasing the book, Professor Ranjit Kumar Dev Goswami, Srimanta Sankardeva Chair, Professor & Head, Centre for Assamese Studies, Tezpur University, spoke of the equal merit of all six Ankiya tas of Srimanta Sankaradeva, and the importance of focusing both upon their classical and folk aspects. Highlighting the community singing tradition through which the works of the great Vaishvite saint can be properly appreciated, Professor Dev Goswami drew its parallel with the operatic tradition of Europe.
Dr Pradip Jyoti Mahanta, Professor, Department of Cultural Studies, Tezpur University, in his address spoke of how Srimanta Sankaradeva revived in the 16th century the ancient Sanskrit dramatic tradition, and in fact took it back to its Vedic and Upanishadic roots. He also pointed out how literary and dramatic, dance and musical components come together superbly in Sankaradeva’s plays, and how it is a glorious example of ‘socialisation of art’ brought about by the great saint’s social perspectives.
Presiding over the function, eminent Sanskrit scholar and retired Professor of Gauhati University Ashok Kumar Goswami, lauded Dr Yasodhara Medhi for undertaking the intricately difficult task of transliteration and English translation of Sankaradeva’s all six plays, as well as for tracing in her scholarly book the life and contributions of the great Vaishvite saint, the trajectory of the Vaisva Movement in Assam, and the socio-political conditions of the age. It is a complete work that will be of immense benefit for readers in other parts of the country and beyond, Professor Goswami commented. Published by Motilal Barsidass, ‘The Plays of Sankaradeva’ grew out of Dr Yasodhara Medhi’s doctoral research on the same topic, guided by Professor bin Chandra Sarma and carried out under Gauhati University.