What is Reading Club

Reading Club (RC) is a platform for young intellectuals, scholars and knowledge entrepreneurs across the nation, who is committed to shoulder upon the intellectual responsibility for this nation. Therefore, this club regularly keeps in touch with dedicated researchers, scholars, activists and other similar kinds of knowledge entrepreneurs throughout the country and beyond. This club is a platform to unite as many serious readers as possible, so that we can share their reading methods, reading experiences, interests, problems and possibilities.

Reading Club is a legacy of numerous knowledge movements emerged throughout the span of last two hundred years which had historically shaped out the socio-economic, political and most importantly intellectual map of the nation to be born as independent Bangladesh in 1971. In Bengal, any collective effort to pursue knowledge and beacon of enlightenment could be traced back in the beginning of nineteenth century, when Raja Ram Mohan Roy (1772 –1833) established ‘Atmiyo Sova’ in 1815 as a forum for ‘free discussion’ on the burning socio-cultural issues. It was the pioneer organization aimed at feeding intellectual drought of the society following which came a series of knowledge-enterprise namely ‘Academic Association’ and ‘Society for Acquisition of General Knowledge’ respectively in 1828 and in 1838 by the ‘Young Bengal’, ‘Tattobodhini Sova’ by the Brahmo leaders in 1838 and so on. The historical limitations of all of these organizations were their Calcutta-centeredness and confinement to a narrow segment of the society. But that is not the all about this ‘episteme’ which we call ‘Bengal Renaissance’. The beacon it lit had enlightened the backward eastern part of Bengal and paved the way for emergence of some knowledge-based organizations in different mafussil-towns of this region. ‘Timirnashok Sova’, the first knowledge-based organization of the erstwhile Eastern Bengal, led by Syamacharan Basu, was initiated in Dhaka in 1838. By the end of nineteenth century we have seen at least fifteen organizations in East Bengal whose declared goal was emancipation of knowledge and eradication of the roots of ignorance and superstitions. Most of these organizations were initiatives of local students and their teachers and had named themselves in parlance with the word ‘gyan’ or knowledge for instance ‘Gyan prodayini’, ‘Gyan Jotirbikashini’ etc. With the establishment of Dhaka University in 1921 and the emergence of Muslim Sahityo Somaj (Muslim Literary Society), popularly known as ‘Sikha goshthi’, in 1926, knowledge-movement in Bangladesh reached its epitome and gained its national stature. With its epoch-making slogan ‘Emancipation of Intellect’ and dedicated knowledge activities ‘Sikha’ had built the intellectual architecture of the nation. On the basement of this architecture the historical Language Movement had taken place, concept of nationalism nourished and finally in 1971, through the glorious Liberation War, we attained the nation-state Bangladesh. As a Bangladeshi we are committed ‘’to realize through the democratic process to socialist society, free from exploitation—a society in which the rule of law, fundamental human rights and freedom, equality and justice, political, economic and social, will be secured for all citizens.’’

Reading Club dreams and is determined to be the nursing-school of those young intellectuals who, with their seminal contribution in creating and advancement of knowledge, will be the vanguard of this sacred commitment and change-maker of the nation.