Introduction to Sanskrit Poetics
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Introduction to Sanskrit Poetics

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Item Code: NAY785
Author: C. Panduranga Bhatta
Publisher: Institute of Asian Studies, Chennai
Language: English
Edition: 2019
ISBN: 9788187892779
Pages: 142
Other Details: 10.00 X 7.50 inch
Weight 300 gm
About the Author
Professor C. Panduranga Bhatta who superannuated from the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta in 2017 is a renowned Ideologist and has contributed immensely to the field of Sanskrit Studies. He has taught Ideology and Sanskrit at Post-Graduate level and guided many M. Phil and Ph. D students at the RKM. Vivekananda College, Chennai and Pondicherry Central University. He has successfully applied Ideology to Management while teaching at the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta for more than 20 years. He has authored books such as Dice-Play in Sanskrit Literature (1985), Origin and Genesis of Chess (1994), Contribution of Karnataka to Sanskrit (1997) besides editing the book Pandit N. R. Bhatt Felicitation Volume along with Filliozat, P.S. and Narang, S.P. Prof. Bhatta has published many research articles related to Ideology, Sanskrit literature and Human Values, Creativity and Innovation in reputed journals issued from India and abroad. Prof. Bhatta has secured Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund Award (twice) for the distinctions achieved in Academic field besides being honored with Dewang Mehta Award in 2010 for Best Teacher in Business Ethics and Communication. He has also been honored with a gold medal by the Association of Indian Management Schools for securing the prestigious "AIMS-ICFAI Best Teacher Award-2011". He was deputed to ICCR Chair Professor of Sanskrit at Silpakorn University, Bangkok for two academic years by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.

India has had a rich and voluminous literary heritage. This has created a standard literary taste and due to this a very large number of works on poetics came into existence. The entire field of Sanskrit poetics may be regarded as one continued attempt to understand and appreciate the beauty of literary creations. All aspects of literary activity have been recorded with necessary details by the great Sanskrit opticians from Bharata to Jagannatha Pundit. The principal purpose of Sanskrit poetics is to search for the "soul" of poetry. It has recognized the uniqueness of aesthetic experience and made it the primary purpose of poetry. The various theories of rasa (sentiment) are the attempts of poeticians to understand the psychology of art experience.

The important topics dealt with by the Sanskrit phoneticians are the definition and classification of poetry, drama, prose etc; the figures of speech (alamkaras), the sentiments (rasas), literary merits (gu1J.OS) and defects (dosas, style (ritis), purpose of poetry, equipments of the poet and such other matters related to literature. The primary point of enquiry is what constitutes the essence of poetry and how to achieve it? The results of such enquiries are varied and they form the different schools of theory on poetry and drama, each school approaching the subject from a different point of view. Modem scholars have listed eight major schools of poetics and all the well-known writers on poetics can be included in one school or the other.

One of the most important schools namely the Rasa-School reveals the role of rasa (sentiment). This school emphasizes that rasa is the most essential and indispensable element in poetry. Bharata, the author of the Natyasastra, is the most ancient and well recognized establisher of this school. A number of commentators such as Bhatta Lollata, Sri Sankuka, Bhatta Nayaka and Abhinava gupta have contributed in enriching the aesthetic thought and made Bharata's Natyasastra a prestigious work in the world's history on poetic ideas. Bhatta Lollata makes no distinction between real emotion of life and emotion in art. Sri Sankuka tries to explain rasa as an act of inference made enjoyable by the unique charm of art.

According to Bhatta Nayaka rasa is more of a mystic like ecstasy involving universalization of all factors figuring in the aesthetic process. In the opinion of Abhinava gupta rasa is the highest subjective-cum-spiritual bliss for human beings. He seeks the support of Anandavardhana's theory of suggestion to explain the process of rasa-realization. Vamana for the first time made enquiries into what constitutes the soul of poetry. He arrived at the conclusion that literary style (riti) is the soul of poetry and words and sense form the body of poetry.

The concepts of figure of speech (alamkara), gunas, and riti underwent significant changes when Anandavardhana established suggestion (dhvani) as the soul of poetry.

Suggestion (dhvani) elaborated by Anandavardhana refers to a special meaning that poetic language suggests. Suggestion arises from the unity of word and sense.

Anandavardhana's Dhvanyaloka is a master piece in the history of alamkara literature because it showcases the suggestive potentiality of the language. Anandavardhana formulated and Abhinava gupta elaborated and clarified the power of suggestion (dhvani) which poetry acquires and which goes beyond all the logical, grammatical and syntactical resources. Anandavardhana did not reject the earlier theories established by his predecessors when he established suggestion (dhvani) as the soul of poetry. He came out with a new scheme, where all the different elements of poetry are systematically and harmoniously assigned their own places.

The creative period of Sanskrit poetics came to an end with the speculations of Kuntaka. This period was followed by a period, where the earlier speculations were summarized, systematized, elaborated, and expanded.

The main objective of this book is to give an account of the important schools of Sanskrit poetics with special reference to their contribution to Indian poetics. The principal concepts of Sanskrit poetics are introduced with suitable illustrations from the works of renowned Sanskrit poets.

This book is intended to be a text book as well as a reference book for the Post-Graduate students of comparative literature and Sanskrit literature in India and abroad. The special feature of the book is that it will help the non-Sanskrit’s reader to grasp and appreciate the contents readily. Thus, Sanskrit knowledge is not a pre-condition to understand the main aspects of literary theories of renowned Sanskrit poeticians.

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

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