Our work explores the legacy of the eighteenth century poet, Vali Dakhani, most often described as the originator of Urdu/Rekhta poetry. While widely acknowledged as one of the primary creators of Urdu, both in his time and ours, Vali's literary merits and influence have remained quite controversial. Our presentation will discuss the origins of this debate in eighteenth-century Persian tazkiras and contextualize the image of Vali presented within such Persian sources with the literary creativity his work inspired among later poets by reading both some of his poems and the responses. Vali's legacy, we argue, offers new ways to think about the engagement between Persian and the emerging vernacular literary traditions of the late Mughal period.
Documents in Persian and poems in Urdu, along with our translations will be available on catalyst by May 14 :https://catalyst.uw.edu/workspace/pdhavan/30110/
Workshop led by Heidi Pauwels (Asian L&L) and Purnima Dhavan (History)