Listen to VOA's Hello Washington Program on Nazrul [May 2007]
a distinctive voice and beacon of Global Belonging,
the National Poet of Bangladesh, and
popularly known as the Rebel Poet of Bengal
Kazi Nazrul Islam
Kazi Nazrul Islam said, "Even though I was born in this country (Bengal), in this society, I don't belong to just this country, this society. I belong to the world." [Nazrul Rochonaboli, Bangla Academy, Vol. 4, p. 91; Listen to the audio file below.]
He deserves to be known to the world as
an extraordinary and most versatile poet, lyricist, and writer (He holds a world record in terms of number of songs written and composed. Although his primary contributions are in the areas of poetry and music, including classical music, he also wrote a good number of novels as well as prose.);
a mass-oriented, revolutionary literary figure;
a rebellious voice against bigotry, injustice, oppression and inequality of all kind;
a personality full of love - romantic and humanistic - who could also express his feelings in the most beautiful way;
a fearless and undaunted activist always feared by the establishment;
a passionate advocate of religious/ideological harmony as reflected particularly in his contribution toward better Hindu-Muslim relationship (even Rabindranath Thakur did not write a Hamd/Naat, but Nazrul wrote Shayma songs);
an uncommon voice of Islam proclaiming universal values, peace, freedom, justice, harmony and cooperation, while repudiating any bigotry, extremism, fanaticism, narrow-mindedness, judgmentalism, exploitation in the name of any religion or ideology including Islam;
a symbol of ever fresh youth, valor, creativity, freedom and indomitable human spirit;
and, most importantly,
as a wonderful, warm-hearted, loving human being.
The goals of this website are threefolds:
To better introduce Nazrul to the world
To gather as much material as possible, particularly in English, and make it available online
To present Nazrul in his FULL-spectrum, the dimensions of his life Muslims, non-Muslims, secularists, leftists, or feminists may LOVE or HATE [This is probably the most distinctive aspect of my approach and perspective in building this website.]
Who was Nazrul?
I hope to address this in a separate article in future. (My initial and partial draft is now in the making. See under Works on Nazrul.)
There are nationalists who drew and still draw their patriotic inspiration from Nazrul's songs and poetry, leftists who would like to portray the poet as one of their comrades, and secularists who would like to quote Nazrul to support their position. There are Muslims who would fervently like to portray Nazrul as a poet of Islamic Renaissance, while there are other Muslims who "couldn't care less" about him and would, with equal vehemence, like to condemn and disown him as a Muslim.
It is my personal view that the best and fairest assessment of Kazi Nazrul is possible when we try not to impose the color of our own paint brush on him, rather letting him present himself in his own words, keeping in mind that each human being's life and views evolve over time.
If you have a real interest in understanding Nazrul, I invite you to explore this website by beginning with the following two items, which might help to understand him better.
"Forgive me ... Forget me ..." [The words of Nazrul at one of the receptions in his honor; in the voice of Kazi Shabbyoshachi, his son; To listen to this and all other audio files at this website, you need RealPlayer G2. You can download it free from:
"My Explanation" (Amar Koifiyot): A poem
Please note that this website is in the process of development. You too can join and help this initiative to further expand and enrich this site. Go to "You can help".
Where can you get major updates about this website?
Where most of my Nazrul-related and other writings appear first?
At a new and distinctive forum, called Nazrul Forum.
Learn more about it at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/nazrul.
Subscribe to the forum by sending a blank email to: email@example.com .
Go ahead, give the forum a try.
Copyright: This is a non-profit, volunteer effort. I have hardly anything from me that I can claim copyrighted. I have taken material from the internet and other sources to put them together here in one website, the very first dedicated one to the Rebel Poet. If you find any copyright violation, please let me know so that I can rectify it.