March 2024

5:00 PM IST

Room 300, School of Arts and Sciences
Central Campus
Ahmedabad University


The Value(s) of a Literary Education: Beauty, Truth, Language, Freedom, and Democracy

Humanities and Languages Division Seminar Series
Chandrahas Choudhury | Novelist, Travel Writer

Chandrahas Choudhury

Novelist, Travel Writer

Of all the humanistic disciplines, literary study is the least rule- and goal-oriented. This has led to repeated efforts to prove its worth, either by systematizing the tenets that inform its study or by tying it to some notion of value that can be measured in the market. But, paradoxically, literary study is never more powerful than when it is enjoyed and cherished on its own terms, as a realm where the deepest questions of life are contemplated in rich and subtle language, and the reader is initiated gradually in the relationship between reading, thinking, selfhood, freedom, beauty, and power. In this lecture, the novelist Chandrahas Choudhury will attempt to demonstrate how a literary education can, especially when we are young, give us new eyes with which to understand ourselves and new ambitions and discontents for our public and private lives.


Chandrahas Choudhury

Chandrahas Choudhury is the author of three novels: Arzee the Dwarf (HarperCollins, 2009), Clouds (Simon & Schuster, 2018) and Days of My China Dragon (Simon & Schuster, 2019) and a book of essays, My Country Is Literature (Simon & Schuster, 2021). He is the editor of an anthology of fiction, India: A Traveler's Literary Companion (Whereabouts Press, 2010). He also writes essays and travel pieces for Wall Street Journal and Conde Nast Traveller, and was recently a writing mentor at the University of Iowa's Summer Institute program. He lives in Bhubaneswar.