literature is one of the prominent examples of 20th century
women empowerment. Since ancient times, (time immemorial) it is seen that
there has been tremendous curiosity (in suitable desire) to write or to
explore literature among women and in the 20th century it has
reached to the optimum level. By the time, many women writers appeared and
they have contributed significantly to the Assamese literature with their
precious writings and one of such prominent writers is Srimati Hem Nalini
Goswami. She always talks about social reformation and welfare in her
various literary writings.
Smt. Goswami was born in 1992 at Thana Road, Tezpur.
Her father was late Lakshmi Kanta Misra Bhagawati and mother was late
Sumitra Devi. Srimati Goswami got married with Shri Budhindra Nath Goswami
of Kumargaon, Tezpur in 1938. After marriage, she was blessed with husband
and children in Kumargaon, Tezpur. Thrust with family responsibility like
taking care of her children, her husband and other household works, Smti
Goswami continued to write literature because she considered writings as
an indispensable part of one’s life. As a result, she created such
immortal literary works, like – "Hotel Tini Bandi", "Asta Surjya", "Lilyful",
"Aparajita", "Bonda", "Bontisikha", "Biparjoy", "Panchadashe", "Jungle", "Jonaki",
"Sonsapare", "Samay", "Nirabichina", "Nursing Homar Dinkeita", "Dinning
Table", "Abhale", "Sikriti" etc. Among these literary works, some of her
published or unpublished books are short stories, novels and children
In 1984, on 22nd April, her husband died. In
the mean time, her two daughters got married and started living
independently with their husbands. Her sons also got married and
established in their respective fields. Now, Smti Goswami was free and
relaxed, now her only duty was to spend some memorable and delightful time
with her grandchildren which she enjoyed very well. At the same time, she
never forgot to utilize her value able time for writing. In many of her
literary works, her comments regarding these golden days proves her
happiness in such duties. She says- "I drew scenery of birds and flowers
for my grandchildren in Duliajan". This shows her artistic mind.
In 1968, August Smti Goswami’s novel "Bonti Sikha" was
first published. It is divided into nineteen episodes or parts and was
published in two editions. The first edition was published by Lawyers Book
Stall, Guwahati and second edition was published by Late Budhinra Nath
Goswami himself in September 1970. "Bonti Sikha" was based on 1962’s
Chinese Aggression and the main protagonists of this novel are Pradip and
Sikha, Rupram Janaki, Phatik and Nirmal are some of the significant
charcters of this novel. During the first half of the novel, it seemed
that the story of Rupam and Jauki and the story of Pradip Sikha’s love
story moves on simultaneously with equal emphasis on both the stories, but
from the middle of the novel, it seems that Rupram Janaki’s tale almost
comes to an end. Finally, the novel ends with a happy note with the union
of Pradip and Bonti and thus gives a pleasurable experience to the
Another novel of Smti Goswami in "Jungle Jonali" which
was published in June 1988; by Shri gunendra Goswami is another
significant and noteworthy novel. In "Jungle Jonaki", the writer tries to
draw various factors of women characters of our Assamese society. It
consists of twenty stories. "Pauchadashi", another short story collection
was published in 1975. Here Smti. Goswami has portrayed pictures of
socially responsible women in our society.
In the first story "Gomotha", she writes about the busy
and stressful life of a housewife. In another story "O-Samalehog"
character Jiban Sharma’s wife’s realization about life has been
beautifully described. "Bisakta- Bodh" and "Sapan Sapan Hoi Rol" are other
immortal stories written by Smti. Goswami. He another published book is "Biporjay".
Smti Goswami’s unpublished works are more in comparison
to her published writings. In 1976 she wrote another novel "Hotel Tibandi".
Here she writes about story of a responsible house wife who not only
performs household duties, but also efficiently manages her professional
life, her hotel business. In 1972-73, she wrote "Asta Surjya", which is
not yet published. Here also, she tries to depict a particular fact of a
woman. In 1974 Smti Goswami wrote "Liliful", where she expresses friends
true to her friend. In 1978 she wrote another novel "Aparajita".
Smti. Goswami not only wrote novel and short stories,
she also wrote children plays and entertaining literature for children.
Therefore, in 1980 she wrote a drama "Bonda". This drama also remains
unpublished till date.
Smti Goswami, though born and brought up in old
society, yet she has respect for modern present social atmosphere. She
supports some reforms regarding Dowry System in Assam. She believes that
women are not luxurious products for man, but they are life long good
company of men. She cannot tolerate comparison of women to money and
Very often Smti Goswami remembers her past. Life’s
terrible incident happened in her childhood. One day she went with her
nieces to play near the bank of the river Pagladia, where her life was
The influence of this event is found in her various
From childhood, Smti Goswami’s imagination about
beautiful world, nature, reflects, her artistic mind. In 1962 she wrote
about Assamese Women’s life engaged in different wide working fields.
Thus, she worships "Asomi Aai", by her published and unpublished literary
She is not only a literature but also an artist of
drawing, painting and a sculpture.
This artist, litterateur Shrimati Goswami comments
regarding her favorite writers; -- "I have read various books; Assamese
and Bengali. Now, I cannot remember names of all the writers and
translators. But, I can remember the facts, matters and characters of some
books. I respect the famous writer Ashapurna Devi for her remarkable
writings and I like very much short stories of Bhabendra Nath Saikia".
Smti. Goswami is influenced more by social atmosphere
than writer’s name.
With all good wishes, we want more literary creative
contributions from Smti. Hemnalini Goswami in future.