30 January - 3 February 2025 | Hotel Clarks Amer, Jaipur

BNW Banner BNW Banner
Poonam Saxena

Poonam Saxena


The Best of Mannu Bhandari

Vidya Pradhan and Rachana Yadav in conversation with Poonam Saxena

The much loved writer Mannu Bhandari's inspired body of work forges a significant link in the evolution of modern Hindi fiction. Her novels and short stories are a testament to a time and a moment and to the nature of humans, of men and women and their complex relationships. Vidya Pradhan's translations, presented as The Best of Mannu Bhandari: The Wise Woman and Other Stories, introduces us to unshackled women, some flawed and self centered in the eyes of a patriarchal society and yet worthy of agency and respect. Taking forward Bhandari’s unflinching gaze, the stories in this collection are a testament to the inner lives of women, their strength and their fragility , and the odds they battle against, then and now. In conversation with writer and translator Poonam Saxena, Pradhan is joined by Bhandari’s daughter Rachana Yadav as they explore the profound spirit and inimitable style at the root of these transformative tales.

Mirrored Words: The Craft of Translation

Poonam Saxena in conversation with Aditi Maheshwari Goyal

“Because moving from one language to another is challenging, it requires not just translating words but an entire culture.” 

Distinguished writer, editor and translator Poonam Saxena has always had a way of weaving magic with her words and is widely known for launching Hindustan Times’ Sunday magazine, BRUNCH. Her illustrious career includes translations of works such as Dharamvir Bharati’s Gunahon Ka Devta and Rahi Masoom Raza’s Hindi novel Scene 75 to English. Her latest book The Greatest Hindi Stories Ever Told features legendary Hindi writers, from stalwarts like Bhisham Sahni, Kamleshwar and Rajendra Yadav to other formidable writers such as Mohan Rakesh and Krishna Sobti. In a conversation with publisher and Managing Trustee of the Vani Foundation, Aditi Maheshwari Goyal, Saxena speaks of the process and practice of translation along with the discipline and aesthetics of voice and interpretation.