Despite being closely related, Satyajit—’Manik’ to his friends and Bijoya Ray never felt the urge to write her memoirs, but was finally. Satyajit Ray-‘Manik’-and Bijoya got married years beforePather Panchali was made. Manik and I brims over with hithertounknown stories of Bijoya’s life with. Bijoya Ray (27 October – 2 June ) was the wife of the Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray. [Book – Manik and I (Amader Katha) Author Bijoya Ray]; ^ History of the College; ^ [Book – Amader Katha(Manik and I)Author Bijoya Ray}.

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Bijoya Ray for putting into words her priceless memories. Every Ray fan wants to know what he was like as a man. There is nothing so fascinating as the little details of his outward life and his likes and dislikes.

Bijoya gives us a view of Satyajit the man whom we have always known as Satyajit Ray the genius. The title Manik and I is fully justified. In fact Bijoya wrote her memoirs in Bangla, in a series of chapters which amd serialized in the Bangla magazine Desh which were later published in a book form. After the publication of the Bangla volume ajd book was translated into English by Indrani Majumdar. This book is as much about Satyajit Ray as it is about Bijoya herself.

At home with a genius | Business Standard News

Clearly, Bijoya was the intellectual companion that he needed, one who shared his love for Western classical music and Hollywood films. Bijoga not only ran his home but was also the first to read many of his scripts and to give him a maanik. She was a colleague who was always in the background. We see their struggle to get the right financiers and actors, to balance their family life with his all-engrossing work.


She also gives us a detailed account. One discovers in this book the large network of friends and relatives who surrounded the couple.

In fact, they belonged to an illustrious family of Bengal. Satyajit was the son of Sukumar Ray, writer and artist, who is a household name in Bengal. Through his work they came in contact with many others who remained loyal to them through thick and thin. Written in a language which is close to spoken everyday Bengali and translated into an equally simple language in English, the book is an easy read. One has the impression that one is listening to Bijoya narrating her story. The Bangla version even has English words which people normally use while speaking language but they are written in the Bangla script.

The good thing is that the book can be read in bits and pieces, by choosing the chapters that one is more interested in.

One can easily skip these if one is more interested in the stories about how certain films mankk made. As Bijoya married late and had only one child he became the centre of her world and it is only natural that her book has entire chapters on the details of his childhood years. In fact, Satyajit remained untouched by all financial matters. Bijoya also looked after both his mother and her mother. Not only that but she also entertained all the bijoyw who dropped in at their home. Fortunately there was always somebody around to help her out of difficult situations.

As we read this we become rqy that we rarely take into account the work done by a woman and her contribution to the excellence achieved by her husband. As one finishes the last pages one understands how a couple can be so immersed in their own affection for each other that material wealth becomes only a detail.


Bijoya Ray

The Rays never owned a house. But we can see how she does not let out any of this when she speaks of Madhabi the actress in such high terms.

She even tells us how she helped Madhabi to dress up for her role in Charulata. Of course, bihoya relationship with Madhabi did not last very long and all was forgiven and their happy life continued. The physical beauty of Madhabi proved to be too strong an attraction for Satyajit to resist as well as her youthful charm. The most interesting parts of course are the small details of how in the early years they managed to circumvent the problems of finances and technical unavailability of materials.

For example we come to know that Bijoya gave her own saris and jewels for the shooting of certain scenes or how Satyajit himself did much of the peripheral work before the shooting started.

Satyajit answers that he did not want the producer to lose his money. He was keenly aware that someone had invested his hard earned money and was giving him the opportunity to create his work of art. There will always be a curiosity to know more about him. And Manik and I can to some extent quench that thirst. The large number of photographs which are there in every chapter in the body of the page make the stories come alive.

Sunayana Panda is a writer and an actress. She divides her time between London and Pondicherry in India. Author March 7, You might also like: