Never Not an Educator: Tagore as a Poet-Teacher


  • William Radice, SOAS, University of London, UK


Tagore was an educator in everything he wrote and did. He was also always a poet, in his novels and plays as well as his poetry. The dénouement of his novel YogÄyog can be faulted on novelistic grounds, but is understandable if one relates it to his sometimes oppressive sense of his own destiny. His play MuktadhÄrÄ shows that he was well aware of the perils of charisma and gurugiri. His educational experiment at Santiniketan, which rested so heavily on his own charisma, may therefore have had some inherent dangers. Visva-Bharati’s chequered history may in time lead one to ask whether there were problems with the Poet’s dream itself.


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Author Biography

William Radice, SOAS, University of London, UK

William Radice is a poet, translator and librettist. Well known for his translations of Tagore’s poems and stories for Penguin, he has also published nine books of his own poems. He is Senior Lecturer in Bengali (part-time) at SOAS, University of London. He has recently completed a translation of Michael Madhusudan Dutt's epic poem MeghnÄdbadh kÄbya for Penguin India (2010).




How to Cite

Radice, SOAS, University of London, UK, W. (2010). Never Not an Educator: Tagore as a Poet-Teacher. Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language and Literature, 4(1), 41–51. Retrieved from



Forum on Rabindranath Tagore, Asia’s First Nobel Laureate