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."

Monday, November 23, 2015

Hesitant Fragile Grace of Two Girls Conversing with God: Louis Malle

Today November 23 2015 is 20th Death Anniversary of Louis Malle.

I have been taken in by the art of Mr. Malle only in recent times.  I have been fortunate to see his Elevator to the Gallows (1958), Atlantic City (1981) etc. but above all I have been charmed by his short documentary films on India: Phantom India (1969).

I have no words to describe his take on 'Kalakshetra'. Watch a part of the film featuring young Indira PP Bora (b 1943) and Jayashree Narayanan here

Listen to the French commentary that is subtitled in English:

"This is India: A worldview we don’t understand, a social heirarchy that puzzles us, an economic reality that shocks us but also the hesitant fragile grace of two girls conversing with God."

                                          Indira PP Bora  and Jayashree Narayanan, c 1968

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