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."

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."

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."

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Compliment that Marie might have received from Pierre!

When I read Kiran Karnik's article in the The Times of India on Nov 10 2011, it was hard to believe that Indian government of the day was almost toppled in the name of U.S.–India Civil Nuclear Agreement in year 2008:

"Despite repeating 'Open Sesame' many times over for three years, the door that was to usher us into the nuclear club remains tightly shut. No genie to grant our wishes magically appears even after endless rubbing of the lamp. Were we taken for a ride and sold a dud lamp?...There is now a sea change in the global nuclear scenario. Following the tsunami-induced problems in Fukushima, there is worldwide concern about nuclear safety......It is now clear that the benefits of signing the nuclear deal no longer exist and the gains are, at best, minimal. Yet, the cost - especially in terms of strategic space and manoeuvrability - remains high..."

And the subject of 'nuclear' led me to tragic Curie family. And Marie in particular.

November 7 2011 was 144th birth anniversary of great Marie Skłodowska Curie.

Google honoured Ms. Curie with following doodle on the occasion:

Robin McKie:

To Einstein, she was 'as cold as a herring'; much of the French scientific establishment detested her; and she was reviled for her 'wanton' antics. Yet Marie Curie was also a loyal wife, a distraught widow, a passionate lover, and a patriot. For good measure, she won two Nobel Prizes...

...In the end, however, Marie was done down by her offspring. Radium - 'her child', as she called the element that she kept by her bed to watch its baleful glow - had battered her body with its emanations for more than 30 years. At 66, her fingers were blackened and cracked; she was nearly blind; suffered from tinnitus; was plagued by headaches and on 3 July 1934 died of aplastic pernicious anaemia, doubtless caused by radium radiation.

Brenda Maddox:

Hndsight is the bane of biography. Feminism is one of the most distorting of lenses. To see Marie Curie forced to sit among the audience in Stockholm while her husband, Pierre, gave the lecture following their joint receipt of the Nobel Prize in 1903 is infuriating.

If Marie was treated like this what chance my great-grandmothers stood in year 1903?

Or even Dr. Anandi Gopal Joshi (आनंदी गोपाळ जोशी), the first Indian woman- along with Kadambini Ganguly- to obtain a medical degree through training in Western medicine, did in year 1886.

And here is an artist's imagination of a compliment Ms. Curie might have received one of those days:

'Pierre Curie pays Marie a compliment.'

Artist: Richard Jolley (RGJ), The Spectator, UK