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Shrinivási - foto Ton van de Langkruis
Shrinivási - foto Ton van de Langkruis

(Suriname, 1926) has been called the 'poet of the encounter' as he brings together cultures and people in his work. Born Martinus Haridat Lutchman, the teacher at a young age acquainted himself with his Indian roots. He was one of the first poets to write in Sarnami, the mother tongue of the Hindustani in Suriname and the Netherlands. He published some poets in Hindi too, but the larger part of his work is in Dutch. His first poems appeared in 1952 under the pen-name Fernando, but later he adopted the Hindi name for 'citizen of Suriname': Shrinivási. The poet in his work sings the praise of the multicultural population, the climate and nature of his native country. Since his debut Pratiksha (1968) Shrinivási has published various books of poetry and short stories, which stand out for their quality and musical and metaphorical language use. He collaborated in assembling various anthologies of Surinamese literature, including Diversity is power (2007). In 1984 Geert Koefoed collected a major anthology of Shrinavasi's work: Een weinig van het andere (A little of the other). In 2007 he moved back to Curaçao, where he died in 2019.

(WIN 2023)

Archive available for: Shrinivási

  • Antillen/Suriname 2010

    Krusa Laman - Curaçao

    With: Bas Heijne, Bernice Chauly, Dennis Aalse Ensemble, Diana Lebacs, Elia Isenia, Frouwkje Smit, Iman Humaydan, Roland Colastica, Roy Evers, Shrinivási, Yasmine Allas

    On Curaçao the Fundashon pa Planifikashon di Idioma (Foundation for language planning), is the organisational partner for Winternachten. During the festival Krusa Laman on Curaçao all writers and performers will use their own language. Their words will be projected in the local language, Papiamentu. The translations have been taken care of by the FPI. This year's theme 'A sense of belonging' has been translated as the metaphor Kaminda rais a kue tera.
    This theme is leading for the festival in Curaçao, and will be dealt with from different perspectives. A substheme is migration, and migration in literature. For FPI, the Curaçao anthropologist Richenel Ansano wrote a sensitive essay, Between Love and Terror: Having a Sense of Belonging is no Joke. This essay is available for free for the audience.

    The public library of Curaçao also gives special attention to the theme Kaminda rais a kue tera. On 9 April there will be a festive opening of an exhibition on Krusa Laman and the theme, with all sorts of information on the participating writers and artists, their work, countries of origin, etc..

    Then there are the workshops for secondary school pupils, at the schools that will be visited by the authors. Creative writer Elodie Heloise is preparing the children and students for the festival in workshops. During these workshop the pupils will deal with the theme, and deliver materials for the exhibition in the library.

    Of course the theme A Sense of Belonging is also present in the public performances. There are the readings of the authors, but besides this the visual artist Frouwkje Smit has made an artistic slideshow with pictures of a number of well known and lesser known people from the island, including writers and artists. Al the authors were asked to choose their favourite spot on Curaçao, where they feel most at home. They also chose a text with the spot. The slideshow is combined with music, and will be shown on Friday 16 April in Villa Maria, Scharloo. The versatile artist Roland Colastica will be the M.C. of that evening.

  • Winternachten 2009

    VPRO O.V.T.

    With: Geert Mak, Kees 't Hart, Mathijs Deen, Nelleke Noordervliet, Paul van der Gaag, Raj Mohan, Shrinivási

    On Sunday morning the festival was concluded by a special live broadcast of VPRO's OVT on Radio 1 from Dudok in The Hague. In VPRO's history programme OVT (simple past tense) literature and (falsified) history came together in talks with Winternachten's 2009 guests. With, among others, Nelleke Noordervliet, Kees 't Hart, Geert Mak, Shrinivási from Suriname and the Surinamese/Hindu musician/poet Raj Mohan, who treated the audience on a few beautiful and moving songs. The program was hosted by Paul van der Gaag and Mathijs Deen.

  • Winternachten 2009 – Winternachten zaterdagavond

    Poets of the memory - Suriname/Antilles

    mud of Suriname
    sticking to the soles of my feet
    still leaving traces behind
    on the shiny tile paving
    of Holland

    Writes the Hindustani-Surinamese poet and musician Raj Mohan. In the programme Poets of the Memory fourpoets shared the stage with evocations of the past. They write about native soil, about the land they live in and about the land of the ancestors. Also with the Surinamese grand old poet Shrinivási, performing artist and poet Gilda Dannarag and the Curaçaon poet and visual artist Philip Rademaker. It turned out to be an hour full of enchanting poetry and candid conversations about forgotten stories and possible truths. Host: Tanja Fraai.

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    Festival Finale Poetry Africa

    With: Def P, Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    A festive conclusion of the festival, with performances of all poets that have participated in last week's event, a Poetry SlamJam, with Def P as co-MC, and music by Ronald Snijders and others.

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    Winternachten Durban

    With: Def P, Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    The popular South-African comedian Soli Philander presents the Winternachten-programme in Durban: an evening with Mbongi Zolani, poets Gibi Bacilio, Shrinivási and Def P. and musical performances by the Dutch/Surinamese flute player Ronald Snijders and the South-African musicians Philani Ngidi (bass), Neil Gonsalves (keyboards) and Paki Peloeole (drums). Part of the programme is a discussion between the authors about poetry, performance and the difference between oral traditions and performance poetry.

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    Opening Night Poetry Africa

    With: Def P, Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    The opening night of Poetry Africa - with Pallo Jordan, minister for Cultuur - is presentation of all poets participating in the festival. These include the five Winternachten-participants and Izimbongi ZaseMzansi (Botsotso Mahlaba, Jessica Mbangeni, Zolani Mkiva, Joe Ntloana, Mandisa Phandliwe), Henry Bowers, Julius Chingono, Finuala Dowling, Ewok, Perpetual Eziefule-Emenekwum, Stephen Gray, The Guests (Victor Mavedzenge and Michael Kudakwashe), Kama Sywor Kamanda, Rustum Kozain, Lexikon, Mzi Mahola, Lebogang Mashile, Oliver Mtukudzi, John Matshikiza, Sally-Ann Murray, Lefifi Tladi, Mphutlane Wa Bofelo, Eduardo White, Makhosazana Xaba, Ghassan Zaqtan, Benjamin Zephaniah, Mafika Gwala en Alhaji Papa Susso (Gambia). The Surinamese/Dutch flute player Ronald Snijders will perform with Philani Ngidi (bas), Neil Gonsalves (keyboards) and Paki Peloeole (drums).

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    Spier Poetry Exchange

    With: Def P, Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    The Spier Arts Trust is one of the most important stages in the Cape region. Here the Winternachten group performs together with the South-African poets Jeremy Cronin, Joan Hambidge and Rustum Kozain, winner of this year's Ingrid Jonker prize. Also The Nigerian poet Harry Garuba will take part in this evening.

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    UWC Lunch Hour Poetry

    With: Def P, Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    At the campus of the University of Western Cape, the Winternachten group performs together with Xhosa rapper Theba, one of SA best poets Jeremy Cronin (also ANC MP and deputy secretary-general of the Communist Party), Alan Boesak, and two campus poets: Diana Ferrus - together with Sipho, and Keith Gottschalk - professor in political science and a former activist.

  • Zuid-Afrika 2006

    Poetry at Mitchells Plain Library

    With: Gibi Bacilio, Ronald Snijders, Shrinivási, Tan Lioe Ie

    A presentation of local poets, together with the participants of the Winternachten-tour.

  • Winternachten 1998

    Wingewest van het Geweten

    With: Adriaan van Dis, Etienne van Heerden, Frank Martinus Arion, Gerard van Westerloo, Shrinivási, Toeti Heraty

    A panel discussion of writers from Indonesia, South-Africa, the Antilles and The Netherlands, titled 'Wingewest van het geweten'. Theme was the development of the cultural orientation of the different countries on eachother. During this meeting Frank Martinus Arion and Adriaan van Dis founded a committee to promote the erection of a National Monument for the commemoration of Slavery.

  • Winternachten 1998

    East- and West-Indian Winternight

    With: Aart van Zoest, Arahmaiani, Arthur Japin, Astrid H. Roemer, Basha Faber, Coen Pronk, Cynthia Mc Leod, Frank Martinus Arion, Gamelan Ensemble Widosari, Grupo Zamanakitoki, Helga Ruebsamen, Michaël Zeeman, Monique Hoogmoed, Paula Gomes, Paulette Smit, Radhar Panca Dahana, Rudy Kousbroek, Shrinivási, Toeti Heraty, Warih Wisatsana

    The third edition of the Indische Winternacht, this time from the East and West-Indiest. Apart form artists from Indonesia and The Netherlands, now also writers, musicans and story-tellers from Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles were invited.
    Michaël Zeeman and Aart van Zoest interviewed the participating writers after their performance. They were introduced by Nelleke Noordervliet.
    In the theatre programme: gamelan-music by Ensemble Widosari, stories by Coen Pronk, Moniek Hoogmoed and Paulette Smit and music by Eric Calmes and his Antillian-Dutch band Grupo Zamanakitoki.
    In the film programme unique movies from the Dutch archives were shown: the first documentaries on the Dutch East-Indies, made in the beginning of the 20th century by J.C. Lammers, commissioned by the Colonial Institute. Furthermore the film Faya Lobbi , the classic documentary on Suriname from 1960 by Herman van der Horst, and Ava en Gabriel , the Antilliaanse movie from 1990 by Felix de Rooy and Norman de Palm.