AUSTIN, Texas (Diya TV) — The prized writings and manuscripts of Indian-American author and philosopher Raja Rao have been procured by the University of Texas in the school’s efforts to promote the study of arts and humanities.
The writings, which include some unpublished works, also include some of his most-renowned works such as “Kanthapura,” “The Chessmaster and his Moves,” and “The Serpent and the Rope.”
Rao’s archive will be available for research and study at the university’s Harry Ransom Center, which is a humanities research library and museum situated at the The University of Texas at Austin. The center specializes in the collection of cultural artifacts and literacy from Europe and the United States.
Other collections at the center include the manuscript collections for a number of renowned foreign novelists such as Amos Tutuola, Gabriel García Márquez, Doris Lessing, Anita Desai, and J. M. Coetzee.
Rao’s achievements as an author culminated when he was awarded the Neustadt International Prize for Literature. Rao was fluent in several languages, his works have been published in Kannada, English, French, as well as Sanskrit.
He has been regarded as one of India’s primal and most distinguished English-language writers, and has authored several works in fiction, talk essays, short stories and even poetry. His most highly-acclaimed work came in the form of the 1998 biography, “The Great Indian Way: A Life of Mahatma Gandhi.”
In 1964, a New York Times Book Review dubbed Rao as one of the most brilliant and interesting novelists of present-day India.
Rao was schooled at multiple universities, most notably Aligarh Muslim University and the University of Madras. He had already gained international notoriety when the former UT Austin President John Silber recruited him to instil knowledge of Buddhism and Indian philosophy at the university.
For his work on the philosophical novel titled “The Serpent and the Rope,” Rao was awarded with the Indian National Academy of Letters’ Sahitya Akademi Award for Literature in 1964. He also earned the highly-coveted Padma Bhushan Award, which is regarded as India’s highest award for literature in 1969, and he was honored with the Padma Vibhushan in 2007.