Rabindranath Tagore was a Bengali poet, philosopher, and Renaissance person who influenced Indian literature and culture greatly. On the year 1913, Tagore became the first ever non-European to receive the most prestigious Nobel Prize in Literature. Rabindranath Tagore was born on May 7, 1861(২৫ শে বৈশাখ, 1268), in Calcutta (now Kolkata), India, into an affluent and scholarly family. In this blog article, we will look at Tagore’s upbringing, education, political opinions, literary works, and other accomplishments.
Childhood and Early Life:
Rabindranath Tagore was born as the youngest of thirteen children to Debendranath Tagore and Sarada Devi. His father was a well-known philosopher and social reformer, while his mother was a homemaker. Tagore’s family was a prominent one in Bengal and had a long history of cultural and literary achievements. His grandfather, Dwarkanath Tagore, was a wealthy businessman and philanthropist who played a key role in the Bengal Renaissance. Tagore was raised in a huge house with a wide garden, where he spent much of his boyhood exploring nature and developing an interest in literature and music. Tagore was home-schooled by his elder brother, Jyotirindranath Tagore until he was 13 years old. This unconventional education allowed Tagore to develop his creativity and love for nature.
Tagore’s official schooling began when he was nine years old and enrolled in a local school in Calcutta. He did not, however, appreciate the rigorous curriculum and traditional teaching techniques. Tagore traveled to England to study law when he was sixteen, but he departed after a year owing to a lack of interest in the topic. Rabinranath Tagore returned to India and began studying classical Indian music, literature, and philosophy. He also studied Sanskrit, which influenced his work. Tagore had a deep interest in science and technology and was fascinated by the idea of flight. In 1915, he wrote a short story called “The Flying Man” that featured an Indian inventor who built a flying machine.
Establishment of Santiniketan:
Tagore established an experimental school in rural West Bengal named Santiniketan, which translates as “abode of peace” in 1901. The school was founded on Tagore’s educational philosophy, which emphasized learning via nature, creativity, and self-discovery. The curriculum was multidisciplinary, including art, music, and theatre. Visva-Bharati University, which still stands today, is one of India’s leading schools of higher study. Tagore was a strong advocate for women’s rights and believed in the importance of education for girls. He established a school for girls in Santiniketan and encouraged women to pursue their artistic and intellectual interests.
Independence Movement, Nationalism & Political View:
Tagore was a vociferous opponent of British colonial rule in India and took an active role in the Indian independence struggle. He was Mahatma Gandhi’s close friend, and his songs and poems were widely used as anthems throughout the independence war. Tagore was also active in the Indian National Congress, where he served as president in 1919. Tagore was a strong advocate for Indian independence but was critical of the violence and extremism of some nationalist groups. He believed in the importance of nonviolence and peaceful resistance.
Tagore’s political ideas were influenced by his humanism and resistance to violence and injustice. He was opposed to both British colonialism and Indian nationalism, believing both to be divisive and exclusive. He advocated for a more inclusive and universalist nationalism based on human dignity and mutual respect.
Awards & Achievements:
Tagore earned various accolades and honors throughout his lifetime, including the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. He was the first ever non-European to win the Nobel Prize for his outstanding works in Literature. The British authorities knighted him in 1915, but he later resigned the honor in protest over the Jallianwala Bagh slaughter. He was also the first Indian to be awarded an honorary degree by Oxford University and the first non-European to earn Germany’s Goethe Prize.
Literary works: short stories, novels & poems:
Tagore is primarily known for his poetry, which has been described as “lyrical, mystical, and devotional”. He composed nearly 2,000 songs, many of which are still famous in India and Bangladesh. He also created novels, plays, and short tales, many of them dealing with themes of love, nature, and spirituality. His most well-known works are the book “The Home and the World,” the drama “The Post Office,” and the poetry collection “Gitanjali” (Song Offerings), for which he received the Nobel Prize in Literature. The devotional poem collection “Gitanjali” explores topics of love, spirituality, and the quest for God. Other significant works by Tagore include “Chokher Bali” (The Sand Castle), “Gora,” and “Kabuliwala.” Tagore’s literary works were translated into many languages, including English, French, and German, and he was widely read and admired in Europe and America.
Actor, Artist, Composer:
Tagore was a talented composer, painter, and actor in addition to his literary achievements. He wrote almost 2,000 songs, many of which were put to music and presented at cultural events. Tagore was a skilled artist and created hundreds of paintings and drawings throughout his life. He also designed the covers of many of his books. Tagore was also a talented actor and performed in several of his plays. Tagore was a prolific letter writer and corresponded with many notable figures of his time, including Mahatma Gandhi, Albert Einstein, and H.G. Wells. Tagore’s music and poetry had classical Indian ragas and folk music influence. He also incorporated Western classical music into his compositions, creating a unique fusion of Eastern and Western musical styles.
Songs Written By Rabindranath Tagore:
Tagore was a prolific songwriter who has created about 2,232 songs. The songs are recognisable as Bengali music, which is popular in Bangladesh and India. Tagore was a prolific author and composer who produced countless songs during the course of his lifetime. Listed below are a few of his best-known songs:
‘Ekla Chalo Re’
‘Amar Shonar Bangla’
‘Jana Gana Mana’
‘Tumi Robe Nirobe’
‘Bhalobeshe Sakhi Nibhrite Jotone’
‘Phule Phule Dhole Dhole’
‘O Amar Desher Mati’
‘Ami Chini Go Chini Tomare’
‘Sokhi Bhabona Kahare Bole’
‘Purano Sei Diner Kotha’
The national anthems of India ‘Jana Gana Mana’ and Bangladesh ‘Amar Sonar Bangla’ were Tagore’s creation. However, he had a significant impact on the tune and the lyrics the Sri Lankan national anthem, “Sri Lanka Matha.”But people mainly recognize him as the creator of national anthems of the two countries.
These are but a handful of the many works by Tagore. His songs are renowned for their lyrical beauty and emotional profundity and have a strong foundation in Indian classical music.
Death & Legacy of Tagore:
Rabindranath Tagore died on August 7, 1941, in Calcutta, India, at the age of 80. He left a plethora of literary, artistic, and philosophical works that continue to have an impact on Indian and world cultures. His ideas on education, nationalism, and humanism are still important today, and his poetry and songs are widely read and sung in India and across the world. Tagore’s legacy also includes the founding of Visva-Bharati University, which stands as a testament to his dedication to education and creativity.
Finally, Rabindranath Tagore was a real polymath who contributed significantly to Indian literature, music, art, and culture. His life and works continue to inspire people all around the world. Through his philosophy of education and his commitment to humanism, Tagore left a lasting legacy that embodies the ideals of creativity, inclusivity, and respect for all.