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.”

W H Auden: "But in my arms till break of day / Let the living creature lie. / Mortal, guilty, but to me/ The entirely beautiful."

Will Self: “To attempt to write seriously is always, I feel, to fail – the disjunction between my beautifully sonorous, accurate and painfully affecting mental content, and the leaden, halting sentences on the page always seems a dreadful falling short. It is this failure – a ceaseless threnody keening through the writing mind – that dominates my working life, just as an overweening sense of not having loved with enough depth or recklessness or tenderness dominates my personal one.”

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."

Art Spiegelman: "You know words in a way are hitting you on the left side of your brain, music and visual arts hit on the right side of the brain, so the idea is to pummel you, to send you from left brain to right brain and back until you're as unbalanced as I am."

विलास सारंग: "संदर्भ कुठलेही असोत, संस्कृत, इंग्रजी, बुद्धिवादी, तांत्रिक, इतिहासाचे, खगोलशास्त्राचे, आधुनिक पदार्थविज्ञानाचे, शिवकालीन व पेशवाईतील बखरीचे, अगणित ज्ञानक्षेत्रांचे, अशा वैविध्यपूर्ण ज्ञानावर लेखन- विशेषत: कवितालेखन- उभं राहत."

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Isn't Akbar as much ours as Shivaji?

The other day on Marathi TV comedy Phu Bai Phu (फू बाई फू) I saw Emperor Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar teased rather crudely. (Even otherwise the quality of comedy in the said program is very ordinary and just proves one more time how badly Marathi TV needs quality scripts.)

[p.s. In the finale of this contest, televised on August 15 2010, which I watched for first 10 minutes, there were tasteless jokes about Birbal and Jodha Bai. I feel terribly ashamed of this.]

Since Prithviraj Kapoor's theatrical performance as Akbar in Mughal-e-Azam (1960), he has been up for some fun for last fifty years.

Akbar does not mind. Neither has it seemed Akbar's supporters.

Shahu IV (1874-1922), aka Rajarshi Shahu, used to rever both Akbar and Shivaji. Even Shivaji has praised Akbar in glowing terms to his great-grandson Aurangzeb in a famous letter.

Will Shivaji's followers tolerate even a slight fun of him?

Isn't Akbar as much ours as Shivaji?