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.”

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);...”

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, September 17, 2017

अहो, तुकोबा आणि काफ्का, तुमच्या लेखनात प्राणी, कीटक, पक्षी यांचे उल्लेख जरुरीपेक्षा जास्त येतात...Kafka's Jataka tales

तुकाराम: 
"श्वानाचियापरी लोळे तुझ्या द्वारी 
भुंको हरिहरि  नाम तुझे 

भुंकी  उठी बैसे न वजाये वेगळा 
लुडबुडी गोपाळ पायांपाशी 

तुका म्हणे आम्हा वर्म आहे ठावे
 मागेन ते द्यावे प्रेमसुख"
(३९९२)

जी ए कुलकर्णी:
"...मला वाटते, फार मोठी नाव घ्यायची झाली तर Kafka, Camus and Dostoevsky हे अतिशय morbid होते. त्याच्या उलट तर मला वाटते , की अनुभवाने जर लेखकाला जीवनविषयक एखाद्या आकृतीची सतत जाणीव होत राहिली नाही , तर त्याचे लेखन मोठेपणी जरीची टोपी घालून हिंडणाऱ्या माणसाप्रमाणे बालीश वाटते. मराठीतील पुष्कळशी कथा अशी अगदी फुटकळ उथळ वाटते याचे कारण तेच. कोणते तुकडे हाती लागले यावरच आपले इतके समाधान असते, की तो कशाचा तुकडा असावा याकडे आपले लक्ष नाही. Kafkaची मते पटोत अगर न पटोत, Hardy देखील असाच , पण त्यांच्या लेखनावर अशा या universal reference चा शिक्का आहे. ..."
(२८/८/१९६३, पृष्ठ १२०, 'जी एंची निवडक पत्रे', खंड २, १९९८) 
 
दिलीप पुरषोत्तम चित्रे, 'पुन्हा तुकाराम', १९९०/१९९५, पृष्ठ ९०:
"... अनेक वर्षांपूर्वी गप्पा मारताना माझा मित्र, ज्येष्ठ समकालीन कवी आणि  क्वचित मराठी कवितेचा इंग्रजी अनुवादक  अरुण कोलटकर याने माझे लक्ष तुकोबांच्या श्वानविषयक अभंगांकडे वेधले. असा एक गट म्हणून त्यांच्याकडे बघता येईल हे फक्त एखाद्या आधुनिक कवीला आणि वाचकाला सुचू शकेल. पारंपरिक वाचकाला हे सुचणार नाही...."

जयवंत दळवी, 'प्रिय जी. ए.: स. न. वि. वि.', १९९४:
"... गंगाधर गाडगीळांनी आपल्या पत्रातून रूपककथा लिहू नका, माणसांच्या कथा लिहा, असा सल्ला दिला  मलाही तो योग्य वाटतो..."



James C. Scott, ‘Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States’, 2017:

“...For reasons that are alarmingly obvious, we are increasingly preoccupied by our footprint on the earth’s environment in this last era. Just how massive that impact has become is captured in the lively debate swirling around the term “Anthropocene,” coined to name a new geological epoch during which the activities of humans became decisive in affecting the world’s ecosystems and atmosphere.

While there is no doubt about the decisive contemporary impact of human activity on the ecosphere, the question of when it became decisive is in dispute. Some propose dating it from the first nuclear tests, which deposited a permanent and detectable layer of radioactivity worldwide. Others propose starting the Anthropocene clock with the Industrial Revolution and the massive use of fossil fuels. A case could also be made for starting the clock when industrial society acquired the tools—for example, dynamite, bulldozers, reinforced concrete (especially for dams)—to radically alter the landscape. Of these three candidates, the Industrial Revolution is a mere two centuries old and the other two are still virtually within living memory. Measured by the roughly 200,000-year span of our species, then, the Anthropocene began only a few minutes ago...”
 

जी ए कुलकर्णी एक पत्रात लिहतात:
"... माझ्या कथात बहिणीचे प्रेम व गाय याचे उल्लेख जरुरीपेक्षा जास्त येतात, असें मला एक टीकाकाराने इशारा दिला आहे (या बाबतीत जरुरीचे माप काय आहे हें एकदा शोधले पाहिजे.) ..."  

वरील  वाक्याची आठवण झाली खालील  वाचल्यावर:

“There are few literary authors in whose works animals and other creatures play as prominent a role as they do in Franz Kafka’s writing. The presence in his stories of burrowing forest animals, insects, mice, dogs, horses, apes, jackals, leopards, vultures, jackdaws, hares, rats, larks, and even mysterious creatures such as Odradek, the kittenlamb, and weird bouncing balls testifies to Kafka’s continuing preoccupation with nonhuman creatures. These creatures speak, sing, investigate, lurk, tumble, scuttle, and tunnel their various ways to the heart of the issues explored in his literature: the nature of power, the inescapability of history and guilt, the dangers and promise and strangeness of the alienation endemic to modern life, the human propensity to cruelty and oppression, the limits and conditions of humanity and the risks of dehumanization, the nature of authenticity, family life, Jewishness, and the nature of language and art.

Nonhuman animals also play an important part in Kafka’s letters and diaries. Often he refers to himself as an animal (indeed, in Czech the word kavka refers to a jackdaw, a small Eurasian bird belonging to the same genus as the raven), as when he mentions feeling like “a sparrow, practicing [his] jumps on the step.” In November 1913, he compares himself to a dog, writing, “At bottom I am an incapable, ignorant person who, if he had not been compelled … to go to school, would be fit only to crouch in a kennel, to leap out when food is offered him, and to leap back when he has swallowed it.” He also compares himself to a sheep: “I am really like a lost sheep in the night and in the mountains, or like a sheep which is running after this sheep.” In an obscure diary entry from the “Night of comets, 17–18 May,” in 1910, Kafka writes, “Together with Blei, his wife and child, from time to time listened to myself outside of myself, it sounded like the whimpering of a young cat.” Perhaps especially suggestive, given that his grandfather was a kosher butcher, in 1913 Kafka seems to refer to himself as a pig under the knife: “4 May. Always the image of a pork butcher’s broad knife that quickly and with mechanical regularity chops into me from the side and cuts off very thin slices which fly off almost like shavings because of the speed of the action.” Kafka’s diary from August 1914, to take another example, contains an unpublished story titled “Memories of the Kalda Railway.” It is unusual for being narrated from the first person. Much of the story deals with the narrator’s attempts to defend his wooden hut from some vividly realized rats. Soon the narrator falls ill with a respiratory disorder, symptomatic of which is a cough described by his fellow railway workers as a “wolf’s cough.” The narrator reports then sitting on a “bench in front of the hut” in order to greet “the train with a howl [and] with a howl I accompanied it on its way when it departed.” In this story, illness seems to render the narrator—perhaps an “I” with whom the hypochondriac Kafka identified—less human and more canine. Kafka’s preoccupation with animals extended into his dreams. One “disgusting” dream from 1911 involved a dog lying “on my body, one paw near my face. I woke up because of it but was still afraid for a little while to open my eyes and look at it.” Many of his story fragments deal with animals and animal imagery. And Kafka the person, of course, is famous for his moral regard for the well-being of animals. After becoming a vegetarian, according to his friend and biographer Max Brod, Kafka visited the Berlin aquarium with a lady, who afterward reported that Kafka had addressed the fish by saying, “Now I can look you in peace. I don’t eat you any more.” The centrality of animals to his thinking is made plain in a diary entry from 1917, where Kafka reproduces part of a letter he wrote to his then-fiancée Felice Bauer. In the letter he states that his “ultimate aim” is to “strive to know the whole human and animal community.”...”

(Marc Lucht, 'Introduction', ''Kafka's Creatures: Animals, Hybrids, and Other Fantastic Beings', 2010)

जीएंची वाक्ये वाचून मला जीएंच्या त्या अज्ञात टीकाकारांची कीव आली. अशा लोकांमुळेच मराठी साहित्य खुरटले आहे... कै गंगाधर गाडगीळ आणि कै जयवंत दळवी बरे लेखक असतील पण त्यांच्या साहित्यिक म्हणून मर्यादा त्यांनी जीएंना दिलेला सल्ला - माणसांच्या कथा लिहा- वाचून स्पष्ट होतात. केवढा linear आणि मर्यादित विचार करायचे हे लेखक. आणखी एक - ते लिहीत होते ना 'माणसांच्या कथा', मग लिहूदेत ना जीएंना काय लिहायच ते!

वर कोट केलेल्या जेम्स सी स्कॉट यांचे इतर विचार वाचून, या लेखकद्वयाने त्यांना काय सल्ला दिला असता कोण जाणे. कै हरिभाऊ आपट्यांच्या आधीची गौरवशाली भारतीय गद्य आणि पद्य साहित्यिक परंपरा अशा लेखकांनीं पूर्णपणे reject केली होती. त्या (आणि तशा) परंपरेबद्दल स्कॉट म्हणतात: "..But the oral epics of the Odyssey and the Iliad, as we have noted, date from precisely this dark age of Greece and were only later transcribed in the form in which we have come to know them. One might well argue, in fact, that such oral epics that survive by repeated performance and memorization constitute a far more democratic form of culture than texts that depend less on performance than on a small class of literate elites who can read them..."


स्कॉट यांचे पोस्टच्या सुरवातीला दिलेले (रंगीत) अवतरण पहा:  होमो सेपियन ह्या पृथ्वीवर फक्त २ लाख वर्ष आहेत आणि त्यातल्या शेवटच्या काही 'मिनटां'मध्ये अँथ्रोपोसीन चालू झाला आहे.  तरी काही टीकाकार काफ्कांना म्हणाले असते :  "अहो काफ्का, तुकारामासारखच,  तुमच्या लेखनात प्राणी, कीटक, पक्षी यांचे उल्लेख जरुरी पेक्षा जास्त येतात..."

काफ्कांचे नाते भारतीय तत्वज्ञानाशी नाही तर जातककथा, पंचतंत्र, हितोपदेश, इसापनीती इत्यादी यांच्याशी आहे आणि त्या प्राचीन तंत्रांचा वापर करत ते भाष्य करत असतात पुढील गोष्टींवर : "the nature of power, the inescapability of history and guilt, the dangers and promise and strangeness of the alienation endemic to modern life, the human propensity to cruelty and oppression, the limits and conditions of humanity and the risks of dehumanization, the nature of authenticity, family life, Jewishness, and the nature of language and art."

मला नेहमी वाटत आलय की जीएंनी गरीब, मध्यमवर्गीय स्त्रीयांचे दुःख फार मोठ्या प्रमाणात, अतिशय जवळून, काहीशा हतबलपणे (काफ्कांच्या शब्दात eternal helplessness) आणि खूप संवेदनशीलतेने कित्येक दशके पहिले होते. त्यांच्या कथांतून ते अतिशय समर्थपणे (effectively) आपल्यापर्यंत पोचते. पण त्या कथांतून स्त्रीया मानवी फॉर्म सोडत नाहीत.

पण ती तो फॉर्म सोडून गाय बनते, ज्या ज्या वेळी जीए गायीचा  उल्लेख करतात. त्या त्या वेळी काफ्कांसारखच ते वर उल्लेखिलेल्या (किमान काही) गोष्टींवर स्त्रीयांच्या दृष्टिकोनातून जीवनावर भाष्य करत असतात. उदा:


“Always the image of a pork butcher’s broad knife that quickly and with mechanical regularity chops into me from the side and cuts off very thin slices which fly off almost like shavings because of the speed of the action.”

The Birds Try to Beat Down the Ocean

18th century Panchatantra manuscript page,

Artist: Anon

 courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

काफ्का अर्थात एक पाऊल पुढे आहेत ... ते पहिल्यांच पानावर  कीटक (monstrous vermin) आणतात 

Artist: Christoffer Tornerhielm

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