On An Inkfight
”I think someone must tell Amitav (Ghosh),” a reader wrote on a blog recently, complaining of what a bore the author was becoming, surrounding himself with admirers and not open to a word of criticism. Never one to shun a challenge of this sort, the writer and litfest activist Amitava Kumar promptly obliged, tearing into Ghosh. Accusing him of hypocrisy, false piety and moralising, Kumar takes on Ghosh for his “tone of self-regard and general disdain.” So what prompted the attack? The immediate cause was a blog post by Ghosh decrying the trend of writers being reduced to performers. But the real reason was his gratuitous tweet criticising the four writers who read from Rushdie’s Satanic Verses at the Jaipur litfest as “making fools of themselves by aspiring to activism”.