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Watch: This hard-hitting poem about the Gauri Lankesh murder will make you think

Young poet Sudeep Pagedar’s piece is about taking a stand, and speaking up. His powerful words will leave you with food for thought.

art and culture Updated: Sep 18, 2017 13:46 IST
Manali Shah
Manali Shah
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Spoken word poetry,Sudeep Padegar,Poets in India
Sudeep Pagedar’s spoken word poem urges the society to come together as one and stand up to hate.(Youtube)

In April this year, a spoken word performance video by Sudeep Pagedar about patriarchy went viral. Titled Privileges of a Penis, it was praised for bashing gender discrimination, slut-shaming, and expressing support for women in a male-dominated society.

Now, the 28-year-old poet is back with another video that questions the system. They’ll Never Silence Us All was penned as a response to the recent brutal murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh in Bengaluru. As a writer, Pagedar felt he had a responsibility to use his art in the service of the world. “If we don’t, it’s quite possible that no one else will.” The video ends with a challenge to spoken word artists and poets in India to respond to what’s been happening in the society, and make their voices heard.

Mumbai-based Pagedar is part of the recent poetry revolution in the country — many millennials are now making videos and tackling subjects like depression, identity, dealing with family troubles, etc. Professionally, he works as a development sector consultant, and has been writing poetry since he was a teenager. He has even received a National Award for Creative Writing, presented by Dr APJ Abdul Kalam.

Before going ahead with They’ll Never Silence Us All, Pagedar admits to having apprehensions. “Perhaps, it is even better that word does not spread about my video, for fear of possible repercussions. But the idea and practice of sacrifice is integral to any revolution,” he says, adding, “Because I know how it feels to be afraid, I don’t want future generations to live in a world where such fear is the norm.”

Though They’ll Never Silence Us All is issue based, Pagedar does not see himself as a political poet. “But if I feel strongly about something, I will write about it.”

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First Published: Sep 18, 2017 13:46 IST