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: "… इ. स. 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
So did Sunanda K Datta-Ray.
I just trashed the envelope but Mr. Datta-Ray was stimulated by it to write an essay that can be found here.
"...The world was less glamorous with fewer big scams. Cricket was sport, not speculation. Hinduism was religion, not politics. Recorded telephone operators’ voices didn’t sound as if they belonged to Hindi-speaking young women trying desperately hard to pretend they were Americans trying desperately hard to speak Hindi...
...People wrote letters instead of tweeting. They chatted with each other, not into machines. Indian women wore saris, not The Red Sari. Actresses hadn’t crossed the gender barrier. Bollywood didn’t pretend to be Hollywood. Bollywood stars didn’t rush to Cannes since there were no awards to collect. There are still no awards but they go to spend all that cash and flaunt their wardrobes. “Topless” wasn’t a fashion option. Newspapers served news...
...I wrote in the seventies and eighties that nuclear bombs, missions to the Moon and vehicles in space were for India, not Indians. Now, the expected 8.5 per cent growth is as much for India as for Indians … or for some Indians until Manmohan Singh redeems his promise of a “new deal for rural India” and extends it also to include the neglected urban poor..."
Artist: Steve Breen