Ashapurna Devi is an Jnanapeeth awardee and well known writer . She grew up in Calcutta, where her father was an artist. Married at a young age, in a traditional Bengali family, Ashapurna could not finish her school education. But she had an inclination to literary activities. At home she read different Bengali magazines and books.
Asha Devi wrote her first stories during 1930`s, for adolescents. Her first story was published in 1937, The Husband`s Lover, in which she touched the changing and contradictory expectations of men from women - as traditional, obedient wives and at the same time, as stimulating, glamorous lovers to show-off to others. She is known for her strong female characters.
Some times some critics have downplayed the importance of her writing, calling her the "kitchen writer". Her famous triology, Pratham Pratishuti, followed by Swarnlatha and Bukul Katha have covered the life-stories of three generations of women, over the changing rural and urban milieu in Bengal over twentieth century. In three books, once again Ashapurna touches on the contradictory expectations from women in contemporary Bengali society - at times oppressed and traditional follower of husband`s wishes, at times the apparently modern, good looking, well dressed campanion. At the same time, she explores the inner desires and aspirations of her women characters, unfettered by expectations of the men and families.