Al Mahmud

Mir Abdus Shukur Al Mahmud[1] (known as Al Mahmud; 11 July 1936 – 15 February 2019)[2] was a Bangladeshi poet, novelist, and short-story writer. He is considered one of the greatest Bengali poets to have emerged in the 20th century.[3] His work in Bengali poetry is dominated by his frequent use of regional dialects.[4] In the 1950s he was among those Bengali poets who were outspoken in their writing on such subjects as the events of the Bengali Language Movement, nationalism, political and economical repression, and the struggle against the West Pakistani government.[5]

Al Mahmud
Mahmud in 2007
Mahmud in 2007
Native name
আল মাহমুদ
BornMir Abdus Shukur Al Mahmud
(1936-07-11)11 July 1936
Brahmanbaria District, Bengal Presidency, British India
Died15 February 2019(2019-02-15) (aged 82)
Dhaka, Bangladesh
OccupationPoet, journalist
GenrePoet, novelist, short-story writer
Notable worksLok Lokantor
Kaler Kalosh
Sonali Kabin
Mayabi Porda Dule Otho
Notable awardsFull list
SpouseLate Sayeda Nadira Begum
ChildrenMir Sharif Mahmud

Mir Arif Mahmud

Mir Tarek Mahmud

Atia Mir

Tania Mir

Mir Muhammad Monir

Mir Anis

Zinia Mir

Early life and careerEdit

Mahmud was born in Morail Village of Brahmanbaria District in present-day Bangladesh.[6] His childhood and secondary education days were spent in this village which is located adjacent to Brahmanbaria town.[6]

Mahmud started his career as a journalist. He obtained widespread recognition after Lok Lokantor was published in 1963. In succession, he then penned Kaler Kalosh (1966), Sonali Kabin (1973),[7] and Mayabi Porda Dule Otho (1976).[8] His other notable poetical works include, Arobbo Rojonir Rajhash, Bakhtiyarer Ghora and Nodir Bhitorer Nodi.[9] In addition to writing poetry, he wrote short stories, novels and essays such as Pankourir Rakta and Upamohadesh. In 1971 he went to India and worked there to build public opinion in favour of the Liberation War of Bangladesh.[3] After the war, he joined The Daily Ganakantha as the assistant editor. He was jailed for a year during the regime of the Awami League government. Later, he joined Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy in 1975 and retired in 1993 as director of the academy.

Literary workEdit

Mahmud's literary work Shonali Kabin[10] published in 1973, is considered as a landmark of Bengali poetry.[9] Philosopher Sibnarayan Ray commented:

Al Mahmud has an extraordinary gift for telescopic discrete levels of experience; in his poems I find a marvelous fusion and wit which reminds me occasionally of Bishnu Dey. The complete secularism of his approach is also striking…he was born and brought up in a very conservative Muslim religious family; it is not a secularism forced by some ideology, but present naturally and ubiquitously in his metaphors, images and themes.

Selected worksEdit

  • Lok Lokantor (1963)
  • Kaler Kalos (1966)
  • Shonali Kabin (1973)
  • Mayabi Porda Dule Otho (1976)
  • Arobbo Rojonir Rajhash
  • Bokhtiyarer Ghora
  • Dinjapon
  • Ditiyo Bhangon
  • Ekti Pakhi Lej Jhola
  • Golpshomogro
  • Jebhabe Gore Uthi
  • Kishor Shomogro
  • Kobir Atmobisshash
  • Kobita Somogro- 1, 2
  • Pankourir Rakta (1975)
  • Na Kono Shunnota Mani Na
  • Nodir Bhitorer Nodi
  • Pakhir Kache, Phooler Kache
  • Prem O Bhalobashar Kobita
  • Prem Prokritir Droho Ar Prarthonar Kobita
  • Upomohadesh
  • Trishera


Mahmud in 2009
  • Bangla Academy Literary Award (1968)[9]
  • Joy Bangla Award (1972)
  • Humayun Kabir Memorial Award (1972)
  • Jibonananda Memorial Award (1972)
  • Kaji Motaher Hossain Literary Award (1976)
  • Kabi Jasim Uddin Award
  • Philips Literary Award (1986)
  • Ekushey Padak (1986)
  • Nasir Uddin Gold Award (1990)
  • Chattagram Sangskriti Kendro Farrukh Memorial Award (1995)[11]
  • Alakta Literary Award
  • Lalon Award (2011)


  1. ^ কবি আল মাহমুদ আইসিইউতে. The Daily Star Bangla (in Bengali). 10 February 2019. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  2. ^ "Poet Al Mahmud passes away". Prothom Alo. 16 February 2019. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Al Mahmud turns 75". The Daily Star. 13 July 2011. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Al Mahmud". Truly Bangladesh.Retrieved: 22 January 2014
  5. ^ Arif, Hakim (2012). "Poetry". In Islam, Sirajul; Jamal, Ahmed A. (eds.). Banglapedia: National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh (Second ed.). Asiatic Society of Bangladesh.
  6. ^ a b Muhammad Musa (1998). Brahmanbariar Itibrittyo. Shetu Prokashoni, Brahmanbaria.
  7. ^ "সোনালি কাবিন". Prothom Alo (in Bengali). Retrieved 16 February 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "BangladeshiNovels Diyet Servisi". Archived from the original on 14 May 2006. Retrieved 17 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ a b c "Poet Al Mahmud turns 73". The Daily Star. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
  10. ^ "The Golden Kabin" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 31 March 2012. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  11. ^ "Chattagram Sangskriti Kendro". Archived from the original on 25 July 2011. Retrieved 17 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External linksEdit