Wednesday, Sep 28, 2022
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A Nugget Of Rediscovery

It is the stories where human lives stray plausibly, but irrevocably, into surrealist territory, while remaining touchingly human, where Sarang is at his most powerful

Imagine that contemporary Indian writing is situated on an over-active seismic zone, where regular eruptions of frenetic energy occur on a barren plain crisscrossed by faultlines.

One of these faultlines is amnesia; we forget our best writers for decades at a stretch. Like G.V. Desani, they slip into oblivion for a generation, only to be "rediscovered" by the next. Another faultline is language: the "authentic" writer working in an Indian language is ceaselessly pitted against the impostor working in English, a language fit only for export. A third is form: the novel rules, with poetry and the short story relegated to the rear.

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