Tuesday, December 2, 2014

I Cannot Love it enough -- Pu.La. Deshpande

........So far I have had a pleasant journey in literature because I have never written under any kind of compulsion. I have avoided literary seminars where they discuss the new trends in the modern short story or poetry, or where they read papers on the role of the modern writer in a changing society. 1 do not like being a writer through all the twenty-four hours of the day. It is only when I sit down to write that I am a writer ; when I am on the stage I am an actor; and when 1 stand in a long bus queue in Bombay I am a passenger cursing the bus company along with the rest of the queues. That is why the really shrewd organizers of seminars do not invite me to participate in them and read a paper. For one thing, they consider me much too flippant for such scholarly meets. I avoid them because I really do not know the modern trends in literature Indian or foreign. So instead of losing myself in the labyrinths of scholarship, I prefer spending an evening in the theatre, or in the company of musicians, or at a favorite pan-shop where I feel young. I have never travelled with a view to writing a travelogue. I did not even make notes. I don't have a writer's scrapbook either. Writing for me has been a joy, and not a task to be fulfilled.

There is any amount of discussion going on today about the freedom of a writer. I like to compare a creative writer with a piece of ice dipped in water. Just as ice is made of water, and just as a major part of it remains inside the water and little of it above it, a writer is created out of the people he lives with and he remains with the people, though as an artist he is a little above them. As ice owes its existence to water, the writer owes his to the people with whom he lives, but he has to lift himself a little above them to have a good look at them. That is the minimum freedom he should have. Unless the head is held high, I do not see any possibility of a fearless mind—which according to me is a primary necessity for all creative activity in art; and a writer who has his roots in the people with whom he lives and whom he loves, will never misuse this freedom. What he writes must come from within and not from without. It is only in this atmosphere that a writer can be true to his convictions. By democracy I understand only one thing: the freedom to live by my convictions and ‘let others live by theirs, I have no faith in mere formalistic patterns, and such dehumanized, obscure creation and fashionable frustration. As Jean Paul Sartre has said, the function of the writer is to call a spade a spade. If words are sick, it is up to us to cure them. I distrust the incommunicable; it is the source of all violence.

I therefore ignore the note of derision in my critic's writing when he dismisses me as a popular writer. No—I rather feel proud that my readers understand me. I want them to understand me. I write for them. Writing is a constant search for someone who will understand you, who will laugh with you, or shed a tear with you. I have never had a fight with my readers, or with people with whom I have lived and want to live in future. My fight is against all that is ugly, all that Gives rise to a feeling of frustration in life. I have fought against hypocrisy, against the intellectual phrase-mongering, against the ideology of 'who-cares-for-the-people'; and a different weapon came to me when I chose to fight. I did not chose the weapon. That perhaps is a gift which God gives to all poor people: a sense of humor. I laugh: I laugh first at myself, and in return my readers and spectators also laugh at me first, and suddenly they realize that they have laughed at themselves, which I believe is good for social health. That is all the reward from my writings. Like Napoleon, who said to Josephine, 'I love you but I want to love you a hundred times more', I should also like to say about literature that I love literature but I would like to love it a hundred times more. I am not an angry young man; I am a hungry young man. I want to read Kannada poems, Bediji's Urdu novels, Kartarsingh's Punjabi novel, Tamil novels, Bengali plays, Telugu songs—I want to love literature in a hundred different ways. My only worry is that I cannot love it enough.

Thank you.

नवी दिल्ली येथे साहित्य अकादमीचे ’व्यक्ती आणि वल्ली’ या पुस्तकास मिळालेले पारितोषिक स्विकारताना केलेल भाषणं.
२० फेब्रुवारी १९६६.

2 प्रतिक्रिया:

kdchitnis said...

आमच्या लहानपणी एखाद्या खवचटाचे दात त्याच्या घशात कुणी घातले की त्याचा "खवडा" केला किंवा झाला म्हणून आम्ही आनंदित होत असू. साहित्यातील "नवीनता" शोधण्यासाठी किंवा आणण्यासाठी आदळआपट, आटापिटा करणारे उचापतखोर न -साहि त्यिक अशा न जमणार्या उड्डाण उड्या मारताना पाहिले की त्यांची कीव येते आणि चीडही. अशा टीकाकार नामक मंडळी व न्युनावर बोट ठेवणारे समीक्षक या दुसर्या नावाने प्रचलित आलेले लोकप्रिय साहित्यिक यांना "बदडणारे" लिखाण करणाऱ्यांचा पु लंनी त्यांच्याच भाषेत म्हणायचे तर "कात्रज" केलाय. पण खरोखरच पु लनी आढ्यताखोरी अभिनिवेश न आणता केलेले ज्याची त्यांची रेवडी उडवणार्यांनी संबोधलेले "माजघरी" लिखाण करून अशा डुढ्ढlचार्यांची पंचाईत करून ठेवली कारण पु ल भक्तांनी त्यांना कधी मोजलेच नाही, कधी भीक घातलीच नाही हो!त्यांना या भाषणात मारलेले पैजार समजले असले तर नक्कीच झोम्बतील.पु ल जेव्हा उपहासाचे शस्त्र वापरतात तेव्हा ते प्रतिपक्षाची कशी "यष्टी" उध्वस्त करतात याचाच या भाषणात पु लंनी नमुना पेश केला आहे.

kdchitnis said...

Pu l has demonstrated how he destroys the "wicket"s of his critics when they discard and ridicule him as "popular" and non-literate writer. He expresses simple logic behind his writings and in a very simplistic way too. He has been termed as too sipid writer who shuns from the real life struggle and complexity. Well he admits that he does not want to get lost in entanglement of scholarships and new trends. He loves music and does not take writing as a task and instead would visit a favorite pan-shop and engage in the company of friends. He say he writes for fun and pun which gives him great pleasure. In short he isolates himself from the "literature workers" who urge for and preserve their identity as litterateur and scholar!