Monday, November 28, 2011

English prose and regional poetry

Without English, India will come to a grinding halt, although 90% of its population don't use it. The precarious companionship of English with the regional languages is a surprising project accomplished over several Centuries. Political parties in India, however, cleverly take cover behind this advantage to camouflage their ambivalence on various issues. What is articulated in English rarely matches the rustic rhetoric of local tongues in style or content. The duplicity in politics is thus amplified by this linguistic plurality.

Failure of English to infiltrate popular culture in India is, of course, a big defeat, but its hold on dissemination of thought through the print medium is intact. This means, we are forever torn between English prose and regional poetry. Not a very happy prospect, but that is our curious destiny. [TNM55]

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