Why Vivek Shanbhag’s Kannada novel ‘Ondu Badi Kadalu’ should be translated into different languages


Some books are intuitive and prescient. They’ve a means of catching our eye, snuggling into our arms, touring with us throughout distances, staying up late with us in mattress. Some books discover us once we want them essentially the most.

Vivek Shanbhag’s Kannada novel, Ondu Badi Kadalu (One Facet The Sea, 2007) has been such a companion to me in current weeks. Studying a complete novel in Kannada posed a formidable proposition although I can communicate, learn and write the language with honest proficiency. My childhood was a splintering between languages as usually transpires with youngsters whose dad and mom’ job(s) takes them throughout state (linguistic) borders inside India. We spoke Konkani at residence however no printed literature in Konkani had come my means after I first found books (in English), and Kannada was nonetheless an unknown entity to me.

Kannada made an emphatic entrance in my life after I was telescoped all the way in which from the alphabet to the beginning of a fourth grade textual content guide on account of my father’s premature job switch from Panjim to Bangalore. I used to be eight years outdated, despatched forward to stick with household associates for a number of weeks, my first time with out dad and mom, deeply absorbing the load of unfamiliarity. One thing of that worry (whether or not of uncertainty or language) tarried in me.

I now write novels and educate literary research for a dwelling (usually my class reads Indian texts in translation). In current instances I’ve additionally learn and written about an distinctive Kannada novel – Sharapanjara (Cage of Arrows, 1965) by Triveni – as a result of there was a literary argument I felt compelled to make. However would I learn a Kannada novel solely for pleasure?

I used to be desirous however hesitant, self-doubting. Nevertheless, when the covid-19 pandemic compelled isolation on me, I discovered myself unexpectedly reaching out to Ondu…



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