मेघदूत: "नीचैर्गच्छत्युपरि च दशा चक्रनेमिक्रमेण"

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.”

Albert Einstein: “I am content in my later years. I have kept my good humor and take neither myself nor the next person seriously.” (To P. Moos, March 30, 1950. Einstein Archives 60-587)

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, 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?