Yaraana: Gay Writing from India

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9780140278392: Yaraana: Gay Writing from India

From Ashok Row Kavi s autobiographical piece on growing up gay in Bombay to Vikram Seth s brilliantly etched account of a homosexual relationship in The Golden Gate, the stories, poems, plays and prose extracts in this collection cover a range of literary styles, themes and sensibilities. Mahesh Dattani s play Night Queen is significant as one of the first serious attempts at dramatizing homosexuality on the Indian stage; the poems by R. Raj Rao included here are part of a series that formed the basis for the Bollywood film Bombay; and the poetry of Dinyar Godrej, Adil Jussawalla and Sultan Padamsee is searing in its intensity.

Apart from the pieces written originally in English, there are works translated from Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati and other Indian languages, also speaking of the agony and the joy of being a man in love with other men. Extracts from the work of well-known writers like Bhupen Khakkar, Kamleshwar and Vishnu Khandekar provide a rare insight into the lives of homosexual men in India s small towns and villages. With wit, passion and courage, these writings bring to the fore the true meaning of yaraana or male friendship and bonding, an oft neglected facet of Indian life and sexuality.

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