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Little magazines: Celebrating parallel literature

By July 3, 2018No Comments

Source : Times of India

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Little magazines, the small periodicals devoted to serious literary writings, usually avant-garde and non-commercial, had played a major role in promoting alternative thoughts and ideas in the state. However, most of these publications were short-lived.

A meeting of all who associated with little magazines during 1960s to 90s will be held on Friday at Bharat Bhavan. This will also be a venue for them to interact with people who express their experiences and thoughts through social media. A book on the history of little magazines in the state, ‘Malayala Samanthara Masika Charithram’ by Pradeep Panangad will be released at the event.

Thiruvananthapuram has a special place in the history of little magazines. The first little magazine ‘Gopuram’ started its printing here at the house of critic C J Thomas in 1957. CJ’s wife and writer Rosi Thomas was the manager. Though it stopped printing after six issues, Gopuram inspired the little magazine culture across the state.

In 1968, poet Ayyappa Panicker started ‘Kerala Kavitha’ from the city. This was historic for being a magazine exclusively for poems. M Gangadharan was the manager. At the same time, another magazine – Yugarashmi- was also started publishing from the city. N E Muralidharan Nair, who passed away recently, was the editor. In Yugarashmi appeared the first forms of modern Malayalam literature.

Poet A Ayyappan started ‘Aksharam’ in the early 70s. It was popular not just in Kerala, but everywhere which had the presence of Malayalis. Popular works of Narendra Prasad and B Rajeevan first appeared in the pages of Aksharam. Bodhi, launched by E M Najeeb and Priyan C Oommen, too came in the 70s. ‘Samkramanam’ was published in the late 70s by editor and publisher Priyadas G Mangalath.

Little magazines such as Padheyam, Prithvi, Pakshikoottam, Kurukshetram, Prabhavam etc were also published from the city. Ayyappa Panicker was a source of power behind all these magazines. An installation of little magazines organized by writer and researcher Pradeep Panangadu was held in the city in 2015.

Poet Satchidanandan, critic B Rajeevan, K P Kumaran, Ajayakumar, Sheeba Ameer, V Karthikeyan Nair, C Ashokan and Priyadas Mangalathu will present papers at the event.


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