A revered poet, mercurial writer, calming musician and a cursive painter. These are few of the facets of the towering figure that Rabindranath Tagore was. Tagore was a born poet and he penned his first poetry when he was mere eight years old. At sixteen, Tagore released his first substantial poems under the pseudonym Bhanusimha. He slowly graduated to his first short stories and dramas as he took significant step towards becoming an epitome of Indian literature. Tagore’s work, mainly in Bengali, denounced the British Raj and advocated independence from colonial rule.
Tagore was highly influential in introducing Indian culture to the West and is generally regarded as the outstanding creative artist of modern India. ‘Gurudev’ as he was fondly known had an unparallel body of work that redefined cultural boundaries not only in India but transgressed through international borders. One such work was Gitanjali — a collection of 103 English poems of Tagore’s own English translations of his Bengali poems. It received international acclaim and fetched him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913. Tagore’s works were widely translated into English, Dutch, German, Spanish, and other European languages.
Tagore was a prolific composer with 2,230 songs to his credit. His songs are known as Rabindra Sangeet. Tagore has composed the national athems of both India and Bangladesh.