Gantha, a women’s writing group, in association with Bengal Boi, published The Woman Who Ate Cooking Pots by Jahanara Naushin, and Gantha Miscellany, the first book by the members of Gantha. These two books are collections of short stories, mostly translated from Bangla stories. The Woman Who Ate Cooking Pots comprises of ten short stories, while Gantha Miscellany contains sixteen. The launching ceremony of these books took place at Bengal Boi recently.
Bangla Academy Literary Award winner Niaz Zaman, who is also a translator and professor at the University of Dhaka, hosted the event. She is the editor of Gantha Miscellany. Dr Parween Hasan, Vice-Chancellor, Central Women’s University and Luva Nahid Chowdhury, Director General, Bengal Foundation and Director - Administrative of Bengal Institute for Architecture, Landscapes and Settlements, were also present.
The programme began with Professor Niaz Zaman’s speech. A minute of silence was observed for the recently deceased writer Rizia Rahman and translator Raina Moinuddin Abu Zafar. Their last works are enlisted in the two books. The event progressed with the speeches of the other guests.
Luva Nahid Chowdhury stressed on the point that English translations of Bangla works are growing in numbers, which is excellent. She further appreciated writers and translators for their hard work in this regard. Dr Parween also talked about the cultural nuisance that often creates a gap in the one-to-one relationship between Bangla and English, while translating. When faced with idioms, colloquialisms, metaphors, symbols and the like, there are a few ideas that keep the cross-cultural boundaries intact. Moreover, the guests spoke about the importance of encouraging people to read more literature.
The event concluded with the translators and the writers of the stories reading a few lines from their works. The books are now available at Bengal Boi.