October 8, 2001
Celebrated author Vikram Seth to give free public lecture
By John Newman
Vikram Seth was born in Calcutta in 1952. He left India to study at Oxford where
he earned degrees in philosophy, economics, and politics, and went on to study creative
writing at Stanford and classical Chinese poetry in China at Nanjing University.
His first novel, The Golden Gate, is written entirely in tetrameter sonnets,
something that had never been done in the English language before. The Suitable
Boy, his prose fiction debut, examined multigenerational Hindu/Muslim conflict
in 1950s India and holds the distinction of being the longest single volume ever
published in English. But Seth is much more than a literary statistic in the Guinness
Book of World Records.
|Vikram Seth has been compared to George Eliot, Leo Tolstoy, and Goethe.
Eugene Robinson, a literary critic for the Washington Post called him,
"the best writer of his generation." Other critics have compared him to
George Eliot, Leo Tolstoy, and Goethe. Since he was first published in 1980, Seth
has produced six books of poetry and three novels.
His latest novel, An Equal Music (Broadway Books), is a novel recounted in
the first person by the second violinist of a string quartet. According to the Daily
Mail, it is "a masterpiece--as clear, lovely and civilized as a Schubert
Seth has published three volumes of poetry, Mappings, The Humble Administrator's
Garden, and All You Who Sleep Tonight; as well as a volume of translations
from classical Chinese, Three Chinese Poets; a book of verse fables,
Beastly Tales from Here and There; and a libretto for the opera Arion and
the Dolphin by the composer Alec Roth. He is also the author of From Heaven
Lake: Travels through Sinkiang and Tibet, an account of his hitchhiking journey
as a student across western China and the Himalayas.
Seth will deliver the Inaugural Sidhartha Maitra Endowed Lecture, "Friendship
and Poetry," for the Satyajit Ray Film and Study Collection at UC Santa
Cruz on October 12, at 7:30 p.m. in the Music Center Recital Hall. The lecture is
free and open to the public.
For more information e-mail or contact
the Ray FASC at: (831) 459-4012 or 459-2837, or visit the Ray FASC web
Return to Front Page