Mulk Raj Anand
Mulk Raj Anand (1905-2004) was a founding father of the Indian novels in English. He was from Peshawar, Pakistan and is acclaimed as of being India’s Charles Dickens. He was one of the first writers from India to gain an international readership in English and was the founding president of Progressive Writers’ Association.
He also worked as a scriptwriter for the BBC during WW II.
Anand’s novels lent voice to the voiceless—untouchables, peasants, women—and his criticism made the extraordinary history of Indian art accessible to countless people in new and exciting ways. His literary works include several novels, lots of poetry and numerous highly regarded short stories.
- His literary career was launched by family tragedy, and his first prose essay was a response to the suicide of an aunt, who had been excommunicated by his family for sharing a meal with a Muslim.
- His first main novel, Untouchable, published in 1935 written at Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram in Wardha, was a historic novel about the life of a member of India’s untouchable caste.
- Other Prominent novels are The Village, Across the Black Waters, The Sword and the Sickle, Coolie, The Private Life of an Indian Prince etc.
On June 9, 2012, 88 sealed boxes of papers, letters, books, jottings, literary material and a copy of Tennessee Williams’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof — all that belonged to Mulk Raj Anand, was made part of National Archives of India. All of this material has been accommodated in a room dedicated at the National Archives for this legendary writer.