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Ismat Chughtai: Google Doodle remembers the Indian author

Ismat Chughtai: Google Doodle remembers the Indian author

  • Google has honored Ismat Chughtai with a Google Doodle on August 21, 2018
  • Chughtai, an author, was known for her progressive literary accomplishments 
  • Her works were controversial at the time, but today have been hailed as some of the most respected and notable works of Indian literature from the 20th century

Google has just honored Ismat Chughtai with a new Google Doodle for what would’ve been her 107th birthday on August 21, 2018.

Chughtai, one of India’s greatest writers, championed many causes through her influential works, including gender equality and human rights regardless of social class.

But just who exactly was Ismat Chughtai? Here’s everything you need to know about who she was and what a Google Doodle is.

Google has just honored Ismat Chughtai with a new Google Doodle for her 107th birthday

Who was Ismat Chughtai?

Ismat Chughtai was an Urdu language writer known for her notable literary works regarding themes such as gender equality, social liberation, class conflict, human rights and the freedom of speech.

She was born on August 21, 1915 in Badayun, Uttar Pradesh, British India into a Muslim family.

The ninth of ten children, Chughtai grew up in Northern India and, inspired by an elder brother Mirza Azim Beg Chughtai who worked as a novelist, took up writing at a young age.

She attended Aligarh Muslim University and later graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Isabella Thoburn College in 1940. Around this time, Chughtai also became associated with the Progressive Writers Association and started to look for a way to utilize her writing skills to support human rights.

Over the years, she produced a number of notable works which explored themes like human rights, women’s rights and class, particularly in ‘Gainda’ and ‘Lihaf,’ which centered on characters who find love outside of their castes and traditional class roles. Many viewed such works as highly controversial at the time, though today they’ve been hailed as some of the boldest and most progressive works of Indian literature.

Chughtai was later awarded the respected Padma Shri award in 1976 by the Indian government in honor of her literary achievements and advocacy for human rights. She continued to inspire new writers in the years afterwards and today is regarded as one of India’s most influential writers of the 20th century.

Chughtai passed away on October 24, 1991 at age 76, but her revolutionary literary accomplishments have stood the test of time and helped to enshrine her as one of India’s most respected and notable authors.

What is a Google Doodle?

Google Doodles are temporary changes to the logo on Google’s homepage in order to reflect an important event, anniversary, individual, achievement and the likes.

First created by Google cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998 to mark the Burning Man festival. They were later produced by the company’s PR officer Dennis Hwang and outside contractors before the creation of an in-house team known as Doodlers was established to produce them more regularly.

Google Doodles, nowadays, are generally used to commemorate holidays like Halloween and St. Patrick’s Day and also to mark events such as Hungary State Foundation Day and honor notable individuals like Ebenezer Cobb Morley and Mary G. Ross.