24 October, 2020

Lizardology: The Future Is Writ

You could say it’s liberal democracy that grants literature freedom. Or maybe, the other way around. The onus is on the writer to set us free.

Illustration by Saahil
Lizardology: The Future Is Writ
outlookindia.com
2016-10-28T16:04:23+05:30

Indian literature, like India, is a combo. There are many Indian literatures. The Sahitya Akademi has 24 languages listed for its top awards. Another 35 or so come up for a different set of honours. There are more awaiting their turn to enter the Akademi’s list. I wonder how many Indians are aware that they live in a country blessed with 60 and more living literatures. Those who sing the praise of India hardly sing about the literary abundance. Perhaps no other nation in the world has so many literatures to enthral them. Not that literature has a place in the big picture. For, of what use is it to those who run nations? They notice it only when it comes in their way. Or when a bigot wants to ban a book. Actually, it is best not to be noticed at all. You never know what the politicians might see in literature. They can twist it into a weapon for mass destruction of minds. Every totalitarianism does it. Or they silence it with censorship—or by hounding and killing.

What is interesting is that each Indian literature pursues its own destiny. Each has a different...

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 Paul Zacharia


Latest Magazine

November 02, 2020
content

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section