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Rabindranath Tagore

5 books of Rabindranath Tagore you can introduce your kids to

May 7, 2020

Most of us have heard the song Ekla Cholo Re by Rabindranath Tagore. The Bengali patriotic song written in 1905 by the Nobel Laureate was also sung by Amitabh Bachchan in the movie Kahaani. Tagore’s poetic songs are laced with spiritual and mercurial overtones. Credited with modernising Bengali art, his poems, novels, stories, dramas and essays explore different themes ranging from political to personal. Some of his notable works are Gitanjali, Gora and Ghare-Baire. His compositions were chosen as national anthems – Jana Gana Mana by India and Amar Shonar Bangla by Bangladesh. The Sri Lankan national anthem is also inspired by his work. Born on May 7, 1861, the litterateur was actually the first in Asia to win a Nobel Prize in literature in 1913. Kadi-o-Komal was his first collection of poetry for children. On the birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore that is celebrated on the 25th day of the Bengali month of Boishakh, here are some of his works that you can introduce your children to. 

Kabuliwala And Other Short Stories

Kabuliwala is a classic tale, originally written in Bengali. It has a timeless appeal, as do his other works for children. They evoke emotion and humour besides reflecting the middle-class values. The situations depicted in the stories seem realistic and use of simple language makes stories easy to understand for kids. Tagore’s stories reflect on the social evils such as child marriage, the importance of educating a girl child and other issues that can get your child thinking.

The Astronomer

Also available in Hindi as Tara Khojak, the book is a dialogue between a sister and a brother. The curious little girl thinks she can catch the moon and it isn’t really that far and tries to convince her brother the same.

Clouds and Waves

The poem is about a child who decides to stay with his mother instead of accepting some tempting invitations during playtime, feeling happy enjoying her company. The poem is also available in Hindi as Megh aur Tarang.

The Prince and Other Modern Fables

The book contains several short stories that reveal simple truths about life. It has stories of a little boy who loses his mother; a tribal girl who is mistaken for a fairy; a young man who tries to come to terms with his first heartache; and many others.

The Land of Cards: Stories, Poems and Plays for Children

This is a collection of some of his best works. Tagore’s versatility and unceasing creativity come alive in these writings. The play The Land of Cards is a satire against the bondage of orthodox rules. The other works in the collection like – The Post Office is about a child suffocated by his confined existence dreams of freedom in the world outside. Tagore’s works convey his deep understanding of human relationships.

Akhila Damodaran

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