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Vikram Seth Biography | Poet

Photo of Vikram Seth

Vikram Seth was born in Kolkata, India on June 20th in 1952 and is 63 years old today. He has been awarded the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman, the WH Smith Literary Award, the Sahitya Akademi Award, and the Crossword Book Award. Beastly Tales and Mappings are two of his most famous works of poetry today, although he has written others. Vikram Seth is one of the most important Indian poets in the modern world.

Vikram Seth's Education

Like many Indians of his generation and many Indians today, Vikram Seth received a primary education that is very British in nature. His secondary education was also very British in nature, since he studied at Corpus Christi College in Oxford.

However, Vikram Seth's education was much more international than many of his contemporaries. He went on to earn an economics degree at Stanford University and then studied classical Chinese poetry at Nanjing University in China. Having a diverse educational background gave Vikram Seth more of a perspective when it came to writing poetry.

Vikram Seth's Life and Family

Vikram Seth has written a wide range of novels and travel writing, in addition to being a prolific poet. He is LGBT and has been an LGBT activist since the middle twentieth century, which his mother eventually learned to accept. His younger brother is a Buddhist practitioner who leads people in meditation, and his sister is a filmmaker. Vikram Seth seems to have come from a family of introspective individuals, which has probably only furthered his abilities.

Vikram Seth's Awards and Accomplishments

Vikram Seth is not the most prolific of all poets, especially because he managed to write on many other subjects throughout his career. However, he still has a sizable bibliography when it comes to poetry alone. Most people who are familiar with his work know Mappings and Beastly Tales. All Who Sleep Tonight, the Frog and the Nightingale, the Humble Administrator's Garden, and Three Chinese Poets are other famous poetry collections of his.

Plenty of people are going to find Vikram Seth more famous for his novels, including A Suitable Girl, A Suitable Boy, The Golden Gate, and An Equal Music. One way or another, Vikram Seth's vast skill with the English language certainly comes through, and he is able to impress from the standpoint of pure aesthetics.

Vikram Seth has been awarded the WH Smith Literary Award, the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman, the Crossword Book Award, the Padma Shri, and the Sahitya Akademi Award. He does not have the academic prestige of many modern poets, but he certainly has achieved a great deal of recognition for his work.

The Legacy of Vikram Seth

Many people might be under the impression that Vikram Seth is a famous Indian language poet specifically. While he does speak Hindi, he primarily writes in the English language. The cross-cultural contact between England and India has created quite a lot of Indian English poetry, including that of Vikram Seth. He has been called out on this by other Indian poets, and doesn't seem to want to change the situation.

Vikram Seth is multi-lingual, but not everyone who can speak multiple languages can write poetry in all of them. Poetry requires a keen understanding of the rhythms of a language and the subtle, artistic nuances of that language. Not everyone who can write beautifully in one language will be able to do so in any other. He is able to write beautifully in English, much like all sorts of other English language poets, and he should not feel obligated to be able to write beautifully in all other languages.

Vikram Seth's subject matter is often very personal. Many of the characters in his novels and implied characters in his poetry are based on the people that he knows, including his siblings. He is interested in the lives of professional people, and has satirized them in his novels before and touched on those themes in his poetry. Poets are often people who care a great deal about authenticity, and they are trying to search for their own authentic meaning in their work and in their lives. Vikram Seth is no exception in that regard. Vikram Seth has been able to stay authentic while being exposed to many different philosophies. 

Vikram Seth: Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes

Book: Shattered Sighs