Raja Rao: Scholar, Philosopher, Literary Artist


Welcome to the Raja Rao Website

Sri Raja Rao peacefully passed away on the 8th July 2006, at 12.45am.
Atmanatmanam ya evam veda. (Thus I go to where the I is.) Mandukya Upanishad.

"I write to you, at the hour of dusk, the auspicious hour, because it is non-dual, and therefore transcendent: the moment when the day and night do not meet, but leave a depth of silence, and so the edge of sound, lingering towards its origins. It's a noble hour because it affirms the unnameable." --Raja Rao, 1988

With his profound and innovative fiction, Raja Rao has enabled modern readers of English to experience the spiritual depths of Indian culture. All of his works involve a search for the fundamental reality in life, which has led him to an investigation of the very nature of writing. For Raja Rao, writing is a sadhana, a spiritual discipline whose goal is the realization of Truth itself. Words become mantras, powerful syllables whose sound and meaning can move the reader toward that goal by giving them experiences of it.

Within India and influential circles in the West, Raja Rao's reputation has been great. The audience for his work comprises general readers, readers around the world who are interested in India, and Indian readers. His writing is the voice of an ancient, insightful culture that speaks to the modern world.

"I am a proud Indian. It is my karma that has destined me to live more than half my life outside this Punyabhumi. India indeed is the land of the ultimate value. The Truth. Hence we can believe and shout Satyameva Jayate." --Raja Rao, 1998

According to R. Parthasarathy, poet, translator, critic, editor, and Director of the Program in Asian Studies at Skidmore College in New York,
          "Rao is one of the most innovative novelists now writing. Departing boldly from the European tradition of the novel, he has indigenized it in the process of assimilating material from the Indian literary tradition. He has put the novel to uses to which it had not perhaps been put before by exploring the metaphysical basis of writing itself; of, in fact, the word. ... As a writer, Rao's concern is with the human condition rather than with a particular nation or ethnic group. ... The house of fiction that Rao has built is founded on the metaphysical and linguistic speculations of the Indians. It is to the masters of fiction in our time, such as Proust and Joyce, that we must ultimately turn for a writer of comparable stature."

The Raja Rao Publication Project is working to make all of Raja Rao's writings, especially those still unpublished, available to readers around the world who are interested in his fiction and thought. The task of the project is to organize, edit, and secure publication for Raja Rao's unpublished novels, short stories, poetry, essays, and correspondence.

This site is sponsored by The Raja Rao Publication Project in Austin, Texas.