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About Kamala Surayya...

books Updated: Jun 01, 2009 17:56 IST

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Kamala Surayya known as Madhavikutty born on March 31, 1934 in Punnayurkulam, a region in Malabar district, Kerala. She wrote numerous short stories and poems in both English and Malayalam. She was brought up in Calcutta where she had spent most of her childhood.

Her books...

* Summer in Calicut
* Paksheeyude Manam
* Dayarikuruppikal
* Palayan
* Neypaysam
* Alphabets of lust
* Padmavathi the harlot
* The Sirens
* The Descendants
* My story (Her autobigraphy)
* The Anamalai poems
* Yaa allah
* Thanuppu
* Balyakala Smaranakal
* Neermathalam pootha kalam
* Only the soul knows how to sing
* Nashtapetta neelambari: Madhavikuttiyude Unmakkadhakal
* Chandana Marangal
* Vandikkalakal
* The Old Payhouse and
other poems.

Her mother Nalapatte Balamani was a great poet of devotion and a narrator of stories related to God. In stark contrast to her mother, Kamala Das spoke out the life and the feelings of women in India through her books with the magic of the ink.

Hubby support
Her husband encouraged her to write her feelings into books and supported her greatly thoughout her life. She did not write her books in the day, but late at night as she was a typical housewife and a mother, making herself busy wid household chores till night.

This busy and hard schedule lead her life into the way of illness. But as she was an optimistic character she remarked that the illness positively and took it as a way to spend more time in the beautiful world of books. This great author-cum-poetess excelled in writing as the same way as her mother did or more than that.

'Bold' controversies
At a time when Indian woman poets were expected to write about the girlish teen relationships of love and fantasies, Kamala brought up a bold and courageous though inspiring the character of woman living in reality. Her writings mainly reflected a woman’s restictions in the Indian society, which was highly misunderstood by most Indian critics.

She was greatly criticised for her open-minded and straight forward nature, which reflected in her books. She wrote about true feelings reflecting people’s minds. Many authors criticised her by saying she wrote about the sex appeal in men and women.

But all controversies did not break down the poetess nor her love for books. She boldly faced false gossips and lies spread by people about her and became more successful.

The woman who called herself the Radha of Lord Krishna, his devotee and best friend, suprisingly converted herself into Islam in 1999. This led to more controversies. But she lived her life as Kamala Suraiyya till May 31, 2009.

Before her death, she was in Pune's Jahangir hospital, affected by diabetes and pneumonia. This great author who is a reamarkable poetess too, lived for 75 years on her own terms and conditions!