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.”

H. P. Lovecraft: "What a man does for pay is of little significance. What he is, as a sensitive instrument responsive to the world's beauty, is everything!"

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."

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Could G A Kulkarni be more like J D Salinger?

I have not read J D Salinger but I plan to read him some day. However I read G A Kulkarni जी ए कुलकर्णी every month.

Some excellent articles have appeared on Salinger after his death.


"THE national bereavement over the death of J. D. Salinger provided a strangely public moment in the career of a writer who’d become best known, in recent years, for his reclusiveness. There are other American writers famous for shunning the public eye — Thomas Pynchon leaps to mind — but Mr. Salinger’s seclusion was unique. By the end of his life, he may have become better known for his solitude than for his imagination.

In a way, nothing succeeds like invisibility. In America, we revere artists who won’t do the thing they’re famous for...

...The more steadfastly they refuse us, the more infuriatingly desirable they become..." (NYT Feb 1 2010)

That's how I thought G A Kulkarni became more desirable.

For a long time, GA refused permission to reprint his books once the first edition was sold out! Avoided meeting the then celebrities of Maharashtra. Used a rubber stamp of his signature instead of signing letters etc.

He simply didn't give a damn. I loved him also for that.

And then I saw in print his voluminous correspondence with many people in Maharashtra.

I was disappointed.

I always felt that instead of pouring his heart in writing and playing psychotherapist to the likes of Sunita Deshpande सुनीता देशपांडे, he could have written more books or painted.

He had so much to say...

On appreciation of arts. Perhaps a translation of his own stories in Kannada. On sights, sounds and smells (he was so good at smells) of Dharwad-Hubli. Where to savour the best south Indian snacks in Belgaum (here I remember his friend Jaywant Dalvi's जयवंत दळवी brilliant essay on eating out in Mumbai), beauty of two sisters Kannada-Marathi...