Home » Literature » Art, the Middle East, Demonetisation, Fiction, Hanuman, Teen Lit, America, Women and Migration all feature on Day 4 of ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival

Art, the Middle East, Demonetisation, Fiction, Hanuman, Teen Lit, America, Women and Migration all feature on Day 4 of ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival

Jaipur:ONT Bureaue:22/1/17: The charisma of ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival regular Shashi Tharoor and the passion of Dr Jon Wilson, author of India Conquered: Britain’s Raj and the Chaos of Empire, are a potent combination for any panel. When the discussion centres on colonial legacies, the magnetism is amplified a hundredfold. The thousand-strong crowd waiting for the session, expected a fiery debate and that is precisely what the speakers delivered.
The Empire, said Tharoor, was an ‘exercise in serving its own perpetuation.’ It was utterly self-serving and ruthless, and all the good that came of it was happenstance rather than intentional systemic change. ‘What the British Raj has deprived us of is our self respect,’ said Tharoor, to enormous applause. ‘That, ultimately, is the key issue of colonisation.’
Both Roberto Calasso and Devdutt Partaniak have helped to re-connect modern audiences to the ancient world of myths, and both have shown a laudable cosmopolitanism and interest in the myths and stories of other cultures. The two great mythologists sat together on the morning of the penultimate day of the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival to make an impassioned case for the relevance of the Brahmanas, a collection of commentaries on the Vedas, written in the eighth century, which are rarely read or discussed today – indeed, the last recent translation of the Brahmanas was written over a century ago.
‘It’s a big mistake to dismiss the Brahmanas as obscure texts focused on abstruse rituals’, said Calasso. ‘Firstly, they’re the first great example of prose in the world. Secondly, they are fascinating philosophical explorations of consciousness. Modern scientists still know practically nothing about consciousness – if they read the Vedas they would have a shock.’
With increasing discussion on the significance of world literature and the need for giving marginalized voices a bigger platform, the role of literary translators has gained more importance than ever. However, opinions differ on whether translation does a service to the original work by taking it to a wider readership, or destroys its very essence in the process. In Lost in Translation the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival welcomed a diverse panel of translators from around the world as they shared their experience and opinion. Radha Chakravarty shared the joy of ‘connecting readers of one language to a foreign culture’ through translation. Iranian-American poet and translator Sholeh Wolpé seconded the thought: ‘Only literature, art and music can bridge the gap between cultures. To that effect, it is our moral duty to translate.’ But literature does not enjoy the same universality as art and music. ‘The essence of literature is language, which is usually specific to nations,’ making literature from a foreign culture much harder to appreciate, observed British novelist Adam Thirlwell.
India should do more to support the emergence of a South Asian free trade zone, according to Binod Chaudhary, the richest man in Nepal.

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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