G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

Shel Silverstein : “Talked my head off Worked my tail off Cried my eyes out Walked my feet off Sang my heart out So you see, There’s really not much left of me.” ~

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Ravi Baswani, an eternal Sancho Panza

One of the joys of reading Marathi written in 20th century is G A Kulkarni's (जी. ए. कुलकर्णी) 'Yatrik' (यात्रिक) from the collection of his short stories 'Pinglavel' (पिंगळावेळ) 1977, an allegory of Cervantes's 'Don Quixote' and D V Deshpande's (धों वि देशपांडे ) commentary on it from 'jeeenchya katha: ek anwayarth'(जीएंच्या कथा: एक अन्वयार्थ).

Who moves me most, from the story, is not Don but Sancho.

('Pinglavel' appears on this blog quite a few times.)

Kundan Shah said after hearing Mr. Baswani's death:"...He helped Naseeruddin Shah flesh out his character and that was the reason behind the on-screen chemistry..."

That has always been the role of Sancho. He helps Don Quixote flesh out his character and that is the reason behind their eternal chemistry.

In Marathi literature the most famous example of Don and Sancho is the pair of Chimanrao (चिमणराव) and Gundyabhau (गुंड्याभाऊ) of C V Joshi (चिं वि जोशी). Gundyabhau helps Chimanrao flesh our his character.

No Gundyabhau, no Chimanrao. No Dr. Watson, no Sherlock Holmes. No Sancho, no Don. No Ravi Baswani, no Naseeruddin Shah and no JBDY.

Artist: Pablo Picasso

Artist: Roc Riera Rojas


"There must be something in the air about remarkable Spanish illustrations of literary classics. In 1968, Spanish graphic design pioneer Roc Riera Rojas illustrated a special edition of Miguel de Cervantes’ cult 1605-1615 novel Don Quixote, which has since become a prized collector’s item."

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