Bishnupriya Manipuri Literature

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The Bishnupriya Manipuri Language

Bishnupriya Manipuri language is spoken in parts of Assam, Tripura, Manipur( Jiribam Sub-division) in India ,in Bangladesh, in Burma and other overseas countries. The language was originally confined to the surroundings of the Lake Loktak in Manipur. The principal localities where this language was spoken are now known as Khangabok, Heirok, Mayang Yamphal, Bishnupur, khunan, Ningthankhong, Ngakhong, Thamnapoxpi and so on. However, later a great majority of speakers field away from Manipur and took refuge in Assam, Tripura, Sylhet and Cachar during eighteen and nineteenth century due to internal conflicts among the prices of Manipur and due to Burmese attack.

The Bishnupriya Manipuri language(also known as BPM, Imarthar or BM) is highly influenced by the Sanskrit and Maharastri as well as Sauraseni Prakrits, though some words of the Hindi language of Northern India , some demoting terms of Meitei and Assamese language and a little influence of Benignly language are incorporated in the BM language.

Literatures of Bishnupriya Manipuri

Written documents of Bishnupriya Manipuri literatures of older periods are unavailable, because records and historical books including literatures had been destroyed and efforts had been made to destroy the history of Manipur and Manipuris. There are, however some rudiments of folk-literatures of Bishnupriya Manipuri which are of elder origin and are handed down to this day through oral traditions. These elements originated during the period from the 16th century to the beginning of this century. Thus the history of Bishnupriya Manipuri literature can be broadly divided into two periods namely ancient Folk-Bishnupriya Manipuri literature and modern Bishnupriya Manipuri literature.

The general trend of writings was spiritual rather than secular and creative. The post modern writers have given up many time-honored conventions. They have come to contact with English, French and German literature with are rich in all respects. There is also the influence of contemporary Bangla, Hindi, Assmese and Manipuri Meitei literature of Bangladesh, West-bengal, Assam, Tripura and Manipur.

Varieties of Bishnupriya Manipuri literature began to be produced very rapidly in a different and changed atmosphere. The Modernism has its manifold effects giving rise to a complete shape of the literature in prose, viz. dramas, stories, novels, travelogues, essays and criticisms, biography etc. and in poetry viz. lyrical and modern.

Translation of a number of classical works of Sanskrit and world literature was done successfully by Bishnupriya Manipuri writers. Of them Srimadbhagabat Gita, Ishoponisad, Meghodutom and Ritu Samahar of Kalidas, Rubayaate-Umar-Khayam, Greek drama Anigone, Eliot's The waste Land, Japanese Haiku, Poems of Rabindrnath are worthy to be mentioned.

Bishnupriya Manipuri literature developed a lot within a very short period and it has become possible only due to the sacrifice of the writers, who invites endless sufferings due to economical, social problems and also due to the disturbance from government authorities and other antagonistic forces on the mother language issue of Bishnupriya Manipuris.  

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Last Revised  june 14, 2004 | 186033| , Copyright 2000-2004 Ashim Singha. All rights reserved.