The Memory of Love

The Memory of Love : Surdas Sings to Krishna

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Surdas is unarguably the best known poet in Vrajbhasha, the most widely understood of the medieval Hindi literary dialects. He is the foremost Hindi poet of Krishna devotion and his verses are canonical in the Krishnaite tradition, which today is particularly vital in Western India. The verses are sung popularly throughout the Hindi-speaking regions. As with most legendary poet-singers in Indian oral tradition, Surdas's authorship has been attributed to a great many verses. In his case, these constitute a very large corpus of devotional lyrics to Krishna, known in Hindi as the Sur Sagar, "Sur's Ocean." In this volume, Jack Hawley offers a selection of his charming translations of the most appealing of these poems, arranged according to such themes as "Krishna growing up," "the pangs and politics of love," and "The Ramayana." Hawley's monumental annotated translation and commentary on the full corpus of lyrics attributed to Surdas, accompanied by Kenneth Bryant's edition of the complete Vrajbhasha text, will be published within the next few years in our South Asia Research series. In the meantime, this abridged edition will appeal to a wide range of scholars and students of Hinduism and Indian more

Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 152.4 x 231.14 x 22.86mm | 476.27g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Abridged, Annotated
  • 0195373995
  • 9780195373998
  • 2,021,807

About John Stratton Hawley

Ann Whitney Olin Professor of Religion, Barnard Collegeshow more

Review quote

The songs of Surdas are presented here with a radiant lyricism that gives the reader a direct encounter with the 'sun' of Hindi's poetic firmament. Each poem is given the space to stand alone as a fine lyrical moment, while being discreetly supported by Hawley's perceptive annotations. An added title contextualizes each song, and an authoritative introduction helps the reader understand the complex background from which this sublime poetry has emerged. * Rupert Snell, Associate Director, Hindi Urdu Flagship, University of Texas at Austin *show more

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