Bhalchandra Vanaji Nemade

  • Bhalchandra Vanaji Nemade (Devanagari: भालचंद्र वनाजी नेमाडे) is a Marathi writer from Maharashtra, India.

    Nemade was born in 1938 in the village of Sangavi in Khandesh. He received his bachelor’s degree from Fergusson College in Pune and Master’s degree in Linguistics from Deccan College in Pune and English Literature from the Mumbai University in Mumbai. He received Ph.D. and D.Lit. degrees from North Maharashtra University.

    Nemade taught English, Marathi, and comparative literature at various universities including the School of Oriental and African Studies at London. He retired from Mumbai University’s Gurudeo Tagore Chair for comparative literature studies. In the 1960s, Nemade edited Marathi magazine Vacha (वाचा). He received a Sahitya Akademi Award for year 1990 for his critical work Teeka Svayanwar (टीका स्वयंवर).

    Literary Career

    Nemade wrote his first novel Kosla (कोसला) in 1963. It is a fictitious autobiographical novel of one Pandurang Sangavikar, a youth from rural Maharashtra who studies in a college in Pune; but it is loosely based on Nemade’s own life in his youth.

    Sangavikar, the narrator in Kosala, uses everyday Marathi spoken in rural Maharashtra and his worldview also reflects that held by residents of rural Maharashtra. Kosala is a chronological autobiographical narration, yet it employs certain innovative techniques. Thus, Sangavikar describes one year in his life in the form of a witty diary. As another innovative technique, the narration describes “historical investigations” often undertaken by Sangavikar and his friend Suresh Bapat, which ultimately uncover to them the absurdity and tragedy of their present condition. “Kosla” is extensive translated in various languages incluging English, Hindi, Gujarati, Kannada, Assami, Punjabi, Bengali, Urdu, Orria, etc.
    After “Kosala”, Nemade presented a different protagonist, Changadev Patil, through his four novels Bidhar (बिढार), Jarila (जरीला), Jhool (झूल) and Hool (हूल).

    The differences between Sangavikar and Patil them are not confined to just their age, profession, habits, and intellectual and emotional perception: While Sangavikar at times keeps the world at bay or even rejects the world, Patil is all for the world and is forever engaged in confronting and understanding it. Sanagvikar is mercurial; Patil is more realistic.

    As a critique, Nemade proposes that short stories are of a genre inferior to that of novels, and that Marathi literature ought to try to be “native”. He has also taken a position against Indians writing in English.

    Nemade’s latest novel, “Hindu – Jagnyachi Samrudh Adgal”(हिंदू – जगण्याची समृद्ध अडगळ) ) was published in 2010.