24 October, 2020

Ascetic Acid

One can easily enumerate the sources of his strength as a painter, one can't do the same about his fiction. But I remain content with the profound pleasure of reading this beautiful book.

Ascetic Acid
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Ram Kumar’s reputation as a painter has overshadowed his stature as a short story writer in Hindi. His mastery of line and colour is incontrovertible; his power as a writer is almost inexplicable. One can easily enumerate the sources of his strength as a painter, one can’t do the same about his fiction.

As a painter, he moved decades ago from his early figurative phase to his non-figurative maturity. As a modernist, he has achieved a variety of effects ranging from the visually ravishing to the metaphysically haunting. As a writer, however, he has been rather non-adventurous in style and form. In his writing, Kumar has stuck to a style shorn of similes, metaphors, adjectives, wit and rhythm. He has continued to rely on worn-out realistic conventions—some simplistic social background, some unspectacular description, some casual characterisation, laconic dialogue. And yet, in his successful stories such as The Sailor, The Steamer, The Sea, Termites, The Sound of Crickets, he achieves a power that is unmistakable. He has not moved beyond his early preoccupations...

unsub

THIS ARTICLE IS PRICELESS...

To read this piece, and more such stories in India's most exciting and exacting magazine, plus get access to our 25-year archives goldmine, please subscribe.


In this article:

More from Krishna Baldev Vaid


Latest Magazine

November 02, 2020
content

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section