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: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Sunday, October 11, 2015

A Head Can Go on Living After It Has Been Severed


Lewis Jones, A review of Severed: A History of Heads Lost and Heads Found, by Frances Lanson, The Spectator, UK, November 15 2014:



"A severed head, argues Frances Larson in her sprightly new book, is ‘simultaneously a person and a thing… an apparently impossible duality… an intense incongruity’. History is ‘littered’ with such heads. Pilgrims visit them: the heads of St Peter and St Paul, for example, are thought to be in the high altar of the Basilica of St John Lateran. Artists are inspired by them, especially the erotically charged ones in the stories of Salome and Judith. Medical students dissect them, thereby acquiring the ‘necessary inhumanity’ of their profession. And Americans pay $50,000 to have their own heads cut off — cryonicists prefer the term ‘cephalic isolation’ — and preserved in thermos flasks of liquid nitrogen. ‘Could decapitation,’ asks Larson, ‘be just another stage in a person’s life?’..."
 
'David with the Head of Goliath', 1609–1610

Artist:  Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio

Loksatta (लोकसत्ता), October 10 2015:

"पत्नीचा खून करून शिर हातात घेऊन निघालेल्या नराधमाला कात्रजमध्ये अटक...चारित्र्याच्या संशयावरून पत्नीचा कुऱ्हाडीने खून करून तिचे शिर वेगळे करून ते रस्त्यावरून घेऊन निघालेल्या एका नराधमाला पुणे पोलीसांनी शुक्रवारी सकाळी अटक केली..."

The Times of India, October 10 2015:



"Security guard severs wife's head, walks with it on the road...A dhoti-kurta clad Chavan walked with the axe and the severed head for 500 metres on the busy road in full view of horror-struck residents of housing societies and passers-by near Rajas Society in the Katraj area. Some people took photographs and posted video clips, which soon went viral...”


The place this happened is right behind the residential complex I live. I have seen some gruesome pictures and even video allegedly related to this incident.

It reminded me of the following devastating picture included and commentated upon by Vasant Sarwate (वसंत सरवटे) in his book "Samvad Reshalekhakashi" (संवाद रेखालेखकाशी), 2012.



Artist: Adolf Born 
  

commentary by Vasant Sarwate

No comments: