Junoon’s Mumbai Local - In Pursuit of the Right Word with Shanta Gokhale

5:30 pm

Dear Readers,

Day : Friday
Date : 15th April,2016
Time : 5:30 pm
Venue : KitabKhana

About the Session:

According to the Internet, 'baazigar' literally translates into 'gambler'. But, that hardly does justice to the meaning or the spirit of the inimitable baazigar, does it? And how do you translate the word 'jootha'? 'Chai-paani' doesn't mean 'tea-water'. And when it comes to regional languages, the search only becomes more nuanced. Has anyone ever found a really satisfying translation for the coy Bengali word 'naeka' or the almost-possessed Tamil word 'veri'?

Translations are exciting, tempting and so incredibly elusive. To capture the essence of what is written in one language and express its meaning in another is a remarkable art in itself. And an almost-addictive one, according to our Mumbai Local artist.

We are beyond delighted to invite the amazing novelist, theatre historian and translator, Shanta Gokhale to Mumbai Local this week. Here's what she says: "At the beginning, translation was something I did for friends. Then, before I knew it, I was doing it for myself. And then, before I knew it, it became something I couldn't live without. Sounds mad? Sure. You don't translate unless you're mad."

As you can see, this Mumbai Local will draw us into the magical, mystical and slightly mad world of translation. Shanta Gokhale, with her years and wealth of experience in literature, will give us a taste of how completely delicious it is to translate different works and yet stay true to their core. Join us in an evening of playing with languages. It will be an experience you won't be to translate into words!

About Shanta Gokhale :
Shanta Gokhale is a bilingual writer, novelist, playwright, translator and performing arts and culture critic. Her Marathi novel "Rita Welinkar", was published in 1992 and won the Maharashtra State award for the best novel of the year. Her translation of the novel in English under the same title was published by Orient Longman in 1995. Her second novel, "Tya Varshi" was published in 2009 and also won the Maharashtra State award for the best novel of the year. Her translation of it under the title "Crowfall" was published by Penguin in 2013. She has written two plays, "Avinash" and "Sex, Morality and Censorship". 

Her critical history of Marathi theatre entitled "Playwright at the Centre: Marathi Drama from 1843 to the Present", was published in 2000 by Seagull Books. She has edited books on the work of two theatre directors, Satyadev Dubey and Veenapani Chawla. "The Scenes We Made : An Oral History of Experimental Theatre in Mumbai" edited by her was published by Speaking Tiger Books in January 2016. She has been writing a culture column for Mumbai Mirror since 2006.


The woods are lovely, dark and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep... -Robert Frost