Al Mahmud

Date of Birth : 11 Jul, 1936
Date of Death : 15 Feb, 2019
Place of Birth : Brahmanbaria District
Profession : Poet
Nationality : Bangladeshi

Mir Abdus Shukur Al Mahmud (known as Al Mahmud; 11 July 1936 – 15 February 2019) was a Bangladeshi poet, novelist, and short-story writer. He is considered one of the greatest poets to have emerged in the 20th century His work in Bengali poetry is dominated by his frequent use of regional dialects. In the 1950s he was among those Bengali poets who were outspoken in their writing on such subjects as the events of nationalism, political and economic repression, and the struggle against the West Pakistani government.

Early life and career

Mahmud was born in Morail Village in present-day Bangladesh. His childhood and secondary education days were spent in this village which is located adjacent to Brahmanbaria town.

Mahmud started his career as a journalist. He obtained widespread recognition after Lok Lokantor was published in 1963. In succession, he then penned Kaler Kalosh (1966), Sonali Kabin (1973), and Mayabi Porda Dule Otho (1976). His other notable poetical works include Arobbo Rojonir RajhashBakhtiyarer Ghora, and Nodir Bhitorer Nodi. In addition to writing poetry, he wrote short stories, novels, and essays such as Pankourir Rakta and Upamohadesh. In 1971 he went to India and worked there to build public opinion in favour of the Liberation War of Bangladesh. After the war, he joined The Daily Ganakantha as the assistant editor. He was jailed for a year during the regime of the government. Later, he joined in 1975 and retired in 1993 as director of the academy.

Literary work 

Mahmud's literary work Shonali Kabin published in 1973, is considered as a landmark of Bengali poetry.  Philosopher commented:

Al Mahmud has an extraordinary gift for telescopic discrete levels of experience; in his poems I find a marvelous fusion and wit which reminds me occasionally of The complete secularism of his approach is also striking…he was born and brought up in a very conservative Muslim religious family; it is not a secularism forced by some ideology, but present naturally and ubiquitously in his metaphors, images and themes.


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