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In a journal entry from 1976, AK Ramanujan wrote:
‘I am publishing them now, making them public, so that the private may find a place in a larger discussion, just as the larger discussions entered my private journal.’
In 2001 while working on a book about Indian poet-scholar-translator AK Ramanujan, Guillermo Rodríguez made a delightful discovery. Hidden in the archives of the University of Chicago’s Regenstein Library, Rodríguez stumbled upon Ramanujan’s diaries and journals, personal writings the poet had kept throughout his adult life. Among these writings was a lovely literary travelogue, written in the summer of 1959 when Ramanujan was just 30 years old, describing a month-long voyage from India to America. The entry, which contains fascinating observations and graceful writing, was also metaphorical for a man who in later years described himself as the hyphen in Indo-American.
Rodríguez has now teamed with the poet’s son, Krishna Ramanujan, to co-edit the recently published Journeys. A Poet`s Diary, a careful selection of the personal diaries, journals and autobiographical writings of the celebrated artist A.K. Ramanujan.
Krishna Ramanujan and Guillermo Rodríguez will read selections from AK Ramanujan’s creative diaries and engage in a wide-ranging conversation that covers the making of Journeys and the window it provides to the author’s innermost thoughts and his creative process.
Guillermo Rodríguez Martín
Dr. Guillermo Rodríguez Martin is the founding director of Casa de la India, a pioneering cultural centre in Spain, which has become the model for India’s cultural diplomacy abroad. He has researched AK Ramanujan’s work and legacy since the early 1990s in India and later scrutinized the AKR Papers at the University of Chicago for his PhD dissertation on the poetics and aesthetics of Ramanujan (University of Kerala and University of Valladolid, Spain, 2006). He is the author of When Mirrors Are Windows: A View of A.K. Ramanujan’s Poetics (OUP, 2016).
Krishna Ramanujan is a science writer at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Coupled with life-long literary interests, he has worked as a writer for Earthwatch Radio, NASA and Cornell University, and has published more than 2,000 news stories on topics related to climate change, ecology, biology and genetics.