मेघदूत: "नीचैर्गच्छत्युपरि च दशा चक्रनेमिक्रमेण"

समर्थ शिष्या अक्का : "स्वामीच्या कृपाप्रसादे हे सर्व नश्वर आहे असे समजले. पण या नश्वरात तमाशा बहुत आहे."

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.”

Friedrich Nietzsche: “Everybody wants the same, everybody is the same: whoever feels different goes voluntarily into a madhouse.”

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);...”

सदानंद रेगे:
"... पण तुकारामाची गाथा ज्या धुंदीनं आजपर्यंत वाचली जात होती ती धुंदी माझ्याकडे नाहीय. ती मला येऊच शकत नाही याचं कारण स्वभावतःच मी नास्तिक आहे."
".. त्यामुळं आपण त्या दारिद्र्याच्या अनुभवापलीकडे जाऊच शकत नाही. तुम्ही जर अलीकडची सगळी पुस्तके पाहिलीत...तर त्यांच्यामध्ये त्याच्याखेरीज दुसरं काही नाहीच आहे. म्हणजे माणसांच्या नात्यानात्यांतील जी सूक्ष्मता आहे ती क्वचित चितारलेली तुम्हाला दिसेल. कारण हा जो अनुभव आहे... आपले जे अनुभव आहेत ते ढोबळ प्रकारचे आहेत....."

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, January 22, 2013

We Cried for Boxer and Shyamchi Aai

Yesterday, January 21 was Orwell day. The great man died in 1950 on that day at the age of 46.

He has appeared on this blog many times but he has been with me ever since my father translated "Animal Farm" into Marathi  "...Aani Kranticha Mudada Padala" (...आणि क्रांतीचा मुडदा पडला) - "...And the revolution's corpse fell"- around 1970.

We read it as  a kids' book. We did not know where USSR was. We did not know what revolution was. We did not know who Lenin, Stalin and Trotsky were.

But we read the book many times. We imagined all those animals using our little imaginations. And we cried for Boxer.  The way we cried for "Shyamchi Aai" (श्यामची आई).

Since then I have read most of Orwell in English but not 'Animal Farm'. My father's translation is still good enough for me.

There is tons of pro and anti-Orwell material on internet but I liked best what  Barry Gewen said recently about him

"...Orwell was against abstractions of every kind: fascism, Communism, especially nationalism; “Americanism,” he once said, was a term that could easily be used for totalitarian ends. His socialism was pragmatic, anti-utopian, perhaps little more than an expression of his hope that the conditions of the poor and the powerless could be improved...He was a friend of the common man who also had an appreciation of James Joyce. He was a socialist with little hope for real change unless decency could somehow prevail..."

Will decency somehow prevail?

New cover of the book

courtesy: Penguin Books, penguin.co.uk. typeasimage.com.

"The deep foreboding red of the Animal Farm cover evokes the political charge of Orwell's allegorical novel of 1945 – the type treatment managing to look jauntily cinematic and cartoon-like, and wholly unnerving at the same time."

Old cover of the book

courtesy: History Today


अवधूत डोंगरे said...

Recently read 'Karl Marx : Vyakti ani Vichar' by Vishawas Patil. This Vishwas Patil is the one who edited a quarterly journal called 'navee kshitije'. One among the group that gathered at Asiatic Society library, Mumbai.

Patil says in the chapter titled 'क्रांती : एक फसवी घोषणा' : 'क्रांती हा शब्द अफूसारखा आहे. अनेक बुद्धिमंतांच्या व बुद्धिजीवींच्या मेंदूला त्या शब्दामुळे गुंगी येते; मग सामान्यांचा विचार न केलेलाच बरा! एवढे असूनही क्रांतीची कल्पना मोडीत निघण्याची मात्र शक्यता नाही.' He argues that though sometimes such 'revolutions' inevitably happen, every sane man should stand for the peaceful reforms rather than violent revolutions.

Aniruddha G. Kulkarni said...

Thanks Ek Regh.

I did not know Mr. Pail had written books and edited a journal. Thanks for letting me know.

I only knew him as highly regarded person at Asiatic. (courtesy: Durgabai Bhagwat and Pratibha Ranade)

I don't know if you have also seen Prabhakar Padhye's book on Marx. It made a good impression on me as a school kid.

I once was a Marxist who believed in violent revolutions. Especially, after reading Anil Barve's poetic "Thank you Mr. Glad". But those days are long gone.

George Orwell:"...The moralist and the revolutionary are constantly undermining one another. Marx exploded a hundred tons of dynamite beneath the moralist position, and we are still living in the echo of that tremendous crash. But already, somewhere or other, the sappers are at work and fresh dynamite is being tamped in place to blow Marx at the moon. Then Marx, or somebody like him, will come back with yet more dynamite, and so the process continues, to an end we cannot yet foresee. The central problem — how to prevent power from being abused — remains unsolved..."

अवधूत डोंगरे said...

I have not seen Padhye's book.

I'm half your age, and more than half of the things you mention on this blog are discovery for me :)

Aniruddha G. Kulkarni said...

You certainly know more than what I knew at your age. You also seem to carry wiser head than me @26!

Also, I would love if you communicated with me in Marathi. It's just that I am lazy to type in Marathi and my Shuddhalekhan is screwed up!