• Parabaas : About Us

  • Parabaas was formed to promote Bengali literature and culture on the internet.

    The internet being a comparatively new technology confined mostly to the West, the presence of Bengali literature and culture is not that extensive in this medium - at least not as much as we would like it to be. The most painful absence is that of the Bengali alphabet.

    The primary reason for publishing the internet magazine, (or webzine) Parabaas, was to provide, for the nearly twenty thousand Bengali speaking netizens, an easy way to cultivate Bengali literature in the Bengali script.

    For the time being, the webzine, Parabaas, is our only effort in this direction.

    The above was written in 1997, when Parabaas was launched, and is kept here to provide historical context. Following are some updates:

    In February 2001, we started a new section, Parabaas Translation, to carry English translations of work by major Bengali authors, as well as relevant articles such as essays, book reviews, etc.

    A part of our mission is to develop and standardize cyber-friendly word-processing tools in Bengali and make them freely available to our readers. This effort has naturally expanded itself to include other Indic languages in our scope. Parabaas-Axar, a bengali word-processing software, was developed and distributed for free since around June 2002. We have used this tool till 2011, when we have migrated to Unicode-based tools and software which became available.

    The Rabindranath Tagore Section is Parabaas's attempt to host a bilingual portal to the diverse literature on Tagore available on the Web as well as to be the central point of a Web-based research project on Tagore. We will publish essays, criticisms, biographical articles and other items, including satires, caricatures, audio and video files related to Tagore and his work. The articles will be either in bengali or in english. The site will be periodically updated.

    Similarly, we have added other bilingual Sections in Parabaas focusing on Satyajit Ray, Buddhadeva Bose, Jibanananda Das, and Shakti Chattopadhyay.

    We welcome your queries and suggestions. Please contact us at editor@parabaas.com.

    Samir Bhattacharya
    Editor, Parabaas