The Philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore


  • Kaiser Haque, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh


This paper aims to provide a comprehensive analytic perspective on Rabindranath Tagore as a thinker, taking on board his views on metaphysics and mysticism, as well as on more down-to-earth matters such as political theory and gender relations. Starting with Tagore’s well-known debate with Einstein over the nature of truth, it pinpoints the specific traits of his metaphysical idealism, refuting rival interpretations like that of William Radice. The question of Tagore’s mysticism and his connection with the Bauls of Bengal is next considered in the light of the psychoanalytic theories of Sudhir Kakar. The connection between Tagore’s metaphysics and his brand of feminism is explored. Finally, Tagore’s critique of nationalism is explored in the light of Ashis Nandy’s ideas, and by making a comparative study of Tagore and Nietzsche.


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Kaiser Haque, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Kaiser Haq, professor of English at Dhaka University, is a poet, essayist and translator. His seven collections of poetry include the forthcoming Ode on the Lungi: New and Collected Poems. He has translated Selected Poems of Shamsur Rahman, Quartet (Tagore’s novella “Chaturanga†in Penguin Tagore Omnibus I), Mirza Sheikh I'tesamuddin’s Wonders of Vilayet (Peepal Tree, Leeds, & Chroniclebooks, Delhi); and edited Contemporary Indian Poetry (Ohio State University Press) and Padma Meghna Jamuna: Modern Poetry from Bangladesh (Foundation of SAARC Writers & Literature). He has been a Commonwealth Scholar, Senior Fulbright Scholar, Vilas Fellow, Royal Literary Fund Fellow, and Cafe Poet at the UK Poetry Society's Poetry Cafe. He fought in the Bangladesh independence war as a company commander.




How to Cite

Haque, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh, K. (2010). The Philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore. Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language and Literature, 4(1), 27–40. Retrieved from



Forum on Rabindranath Tagore, Asia’s First Nobel Laureate