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Google doodle dedicated to Jnanpith winning writer, educationist Mahadevi Varma

Google doodle dedicated to Jnanpith winning writer, educationist Mahadevi Varma

On April 27, 1982, Varma received the Jnanpith Award for her outstanding contributions to Indian literature.

Today's Google doodle is dedicated to Mahadevi Varma, a Hindi poet, educationist, freedom fighter, and women's rights activist. Interesting to know that she was also known as modern Meera, her poems deeply revolve around apathy. Her father was a professor of English, and while the family got Mahadevi married at the age of nine, they also emphasised on a quality education for her, an opportunity she utilised fully.

Mahadevi Varma has been honoured with a Google doodle created by its guest artist Sonali Zohra today.

Inspired by her mother to write in Sanskrit and Hindi, she started penning her thoughts while pursuing a masters degree in Sanskrit.

Her parents were the main motivation for continuing her studies at that time when girls were considered as a burden, she described in her biography "Mere Bachpan Kae Din" and felt very fortunate to be born in a liberal family.

The story goes that Mahadevi Varma (also spelt as Verma) was a student at Crosthwaite School for Girls when her talent for poetry was discovered by her friend, Subhadra Kumari Chauhan.

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Under her direction the Mahila Vidyapith system not only made higher education more accessible to the women of India but offered a course of study which did not upset the accepted social and cultural patterns. As Hindi language gained acceptance in literary circles, both Mahadevi Varma and Subhadra Kumari Chauhan became habitually published authors. Her works appeared in magazines and books. Varma is revered as one of the foundational poets of the Chhayavad movement in Hindi literature, the Google blog said.

"Varma's poignant poetry, and later, essays, often centered on the experience of being a woman". In 1941, she published Atteet ke chalachitra (Sketches from My Past), a short-story collection about the women she met while working as a principal at a girls' school.

Varma has been celebrated by several popular Hindi poets, including Suryakant Tripathi Nirala, Sumitra Nandan Pant, and their contemporaries.

Though a firm supporter of women's rights, Varma also explored the topics of tradition and the past with great fondness, it added.

Mahadevi Varma died in September 1987, aged 80.


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