Harry Potter aspires to be a writer

Daniel Radcliffe

Daniel Radcliffe has worked in the series of Harry Potter films as the lead character of Harry Potter:
# Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (2001)
# Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)
# Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
# Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)
# Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)
# Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009)
# Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 (2010)
# Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 (2011)

The films have been based on novels by J.K.Rowling. And now Harry Potter aka Daniel Radcliffe himself aspires to be a writer. He says that he wants to try his hand at scripting a play or a film.
Daniel, who has been working in films ever since he was 12-year-old, says, "Every time I see a play or a film,I want to write something. I'm convinced in my heart that I am a writer, but I have no ideas."
Let's see if some ideas strike him and his pen churns out some inspired piece of writing!

Book Review: ‘Harbart’ by Naburn Bhattacharya

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GRAND STYLE AND DICTION OF 'PARADISE LOST'



“Forms and figures of speech originally the offspring of passion, but now the adopted children of power”.
COLERIDGE

INTRODUCTION
‘Paradise Lost’ was for Milton the fulfillment of a long cherished ambition. He had resolved that his ‘adventurous song’ intended to ‘soar with no middle flight’. Accordingly, after much deliberations he chose the epic form and a theme equally sublime. Milton himself tells us in Book IX that he could rise to the demands of his ‘sad task’ only.
‘If answerable style I can obtain
Of my careful celestial patroness.’
This ‘answerable style’ demanded a verse which admitted of dignity and flexibility and an ability to rise to the sublime heights. And no responsive readers of ‘Paradise Lost’ can fail to notice that Milton indeed did obtain such a style.

MILTON – THE INNOVATOR
According to Hamford, “Milton of all English writers is the greatest innovator in the matter of expression. It is not merely that forged out of various materials. It is marked by bold departures from English literary usage of his own or of any time. And yet it is this uniqueness of Milton’s style, its remoteness from ordinary English that has aroused a fierce controversy. If it is has found its admirers like M.Patilson, Bagehot, Saintsbury, Raleigh and in our own time C.S. Lewis, B.Rajan, Frank Kermod and L.Smith; the anti-Miltonians too are a formidable array – Ezra Pound, Middleton Murry, Herbert Reid, B. Debree and T.S. Eliot. Obviously, the best course would be to depend upon one’s own response.

INVOCATION
The very opening of the poem, the invocation reveals the grandeur of Milton’s style. It begins with a ‘syntactical leap’ by which we are kept suspended for thirty-six words without a verb. And even when we arrive at the word ‘sing’, we are once more deflected into a maze of subordinate clauses and phrases. Even at the full stop after ‘rhyme’ (line sixteenth) there is hardly any respite and the whole invocation really forms a single continuous statement. In fact, it can be looked upon as a ‘capsule summary’ not only of the theme and action of the whole poem but also of the most salient features of Milton’s grand style. This style is human for its unusual syntax, its exalted language and diction, rich allusions, remarkable epic-similes, formidable erudition and skilful handling of blank-verse.


LANGUAGE
Milton’s style has been called ‘grand style’ because it has always an unmistakable stamp of majesty in it. Milton’s language is not the language of ordinary life. His diction is grand and majestic and his language has a force and spontaneity of its own. He uses a lot of Latin words. He borrows words from Latin and employs them in his language in a befitting manner. He creates a language and diction which quite appropriate to his theme. The Miltonic diction follows the ancient models. Similes and metaphors abound; with the result that the impression that is left on our minds after reading his poetry is that of grandeur, majesty and dignity.
We can describe Milton’s grand style in the words of Matthew Arnold, who says, “In the sure and flawless perfection of his rhythm and diction, he is as admirable as Virgil or Dante, and in this respect he is unique amongst us. None else in English literature possesses the like distinction.” It is sometimes said that the language of ‘Paradise Lost’ is ‘no language’. But in the art of literature one often comes across several instances where the literary language is no spoken language. The Euphism of Lyly is one of the best examples. So is the prose of Milton. So too is the poetical vehicle of Milton. It is an artificial language but it is not the artifice of bombast.

VOCABULARY
The diction of Milton’s epic is a thing composed of many elements – all tending to result in a rich and varied medium. Milton’s vocabulary contains a large proportion of Latinized words such as ‘untamed reluctance’, ‘horrid here’, ‘prodigious’, ‘officious’ etc. Often Milton uses words in their Latin sense or sometimes in senses which have become obsolete. The best example is ‘influence’, which Milton uses in its old astrological sense of suitable fluid from the stars and planets, which was supposed to exorcise plants. Instances of this use are innumerable.

MILTON’S PECULARITIES
Milton prefers the Italian forms of words to forms of a French character such as ‘sovereignty’. Among other qualities of Milton’s style are his peculiar use of the Latin idiomatic participle construction (for example, the loss thus far recovered), the use of Nominative Absolute (for example, ‘I extinct’ meaning ‘I being extinct’); the use of past participle, the use of transitive verbs intransitively and vice-versa. Among other peculiarities of Milton’s diction is the use of adjectives as nouns, as ‘our stronger’ in the sense of ‘he who is stronger than us; a love for conciseness that compels Milton to compress the maximum meaning into few words in a characteristic passion with Milton. Milton is also famous for ‘Inversions’. For instance, take the sentence: “Where to with speedy words the archfiend replied”. Without inversion this sentence would read as: “The archfiend replied to this with speedy words”.

SIMILES AND METAPHORS
Among figures of similitude, of course, the simile and the metaphor abound, example of which stare up from every page.
In search of really remarkable comparisons he borrows from myth, legend, History, Science and travel and of course from contemporary events. And though sometimes, his similes seem to be carried away by prolific imagination, they have a definite purpose. In most cases they offer a changed perspective and are suggestive of Milton’s own attitude. For instance, Satan is at first depicted as of gigantic proportions. He is likened to the huge sea-beast Leviathan who may be mistaken for an island by the Pilot of “some small night-founded skiff”. But while this suggests Satan’s unusual dimensions Milton also implies the danger of taking shelter in Satan’s treacherous protection. Similarly Satan’s ‘ponderous’ shield is like the moon that Galileo scans through his ‘Optic glass’, his spear is like the mast of the ship, ‘shaped out of tallest pine’ growing on Norwegian heights’ what we are made to feel is Satan’s eye view. Yet a little later Satan and his crew are compared to ‘at Pygmian Race’ and to ‘autumnal leaves that strew the books in Vallambrose’.
Like dead leaves; these fallen angels are forever cut off from their source of life.

USE OF PATHETIC FALLACY
We must also refer to Milton’s use of the Pathetic Fallacy. It is an old device in poetry by which a poet attributes the feelings of living beings to inanimate things. In Paradise Lost, Book IX (782-784), for example, universal nature is represented as feeling a death-wound in the impending fall of Man at the moment when Eve eats the forbidden fruit:
“Earth felt the wound, and Nature from her seat
Sighing through all her works, gave signs of woe.
That all was lost.”
These are the various ways in which Milton uses the English language in poetry. He works magic with the language, distorts it in the way he likes, uses foreign idiom in an excellent manner and handles the language like a linguistic wizard.

VERBAL MELODY
There is an important characteristic yet to be mentioned – the solemn grandeur of his verbal melody. This melody is in consonance with general atmosphere of the poem – a mood of awe and majesty and sublimity. Milton’s style has been called the grand style as there is grandeur in his music and in his description. Milton chooses his words for the sake of their sound effect.
“farewell happy fields,
Where Joy forever dwells. Hail Horrors hail,
Infernal world and thou profoundest hell,
Receive thy new possessor, one who brings,
A mind not to be changed by place or time,
The mind is its place and itself,
Can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.”

STYLE UNIFORM OR NOT
Infact, most of the critics who decry Milton’s style seem to suppose that Milton wrote a uniform style throughout. But as Pope has pointed out ‘Paradise Lost’ has not one but various styles, an ‘Infernal style’, a ‘celestial style’ and ‘style of Paradise’ before and after the fall. In any case the more acceptable view is that of C.S. Lewis, B. Rajan, Douglas Bush and E.M.W. Tillyard – that the sublimity of Milton’s style was necessitated by genre – that is by the epic form in which the style had to be dignified, ritualistic and formal. It was Milton’s great achievement that he attained this sublimity without sacrificing the intensity of an impassioned personal commitment.

CONCLUSION
In reading ‘Paradise Lost’ one has a feeling of vastness. One floats under illimitable sky brimmed with sunshine or hung with constellation. The abyss of space appears to be somewhere about as one hears the cadenced surge of an unseen ocean. In loftiness of thought, splendid dignity of expression and rhythmic felicities, Milton has few peers, no superior. In ‘Paradise Lost’ Milton has invented a type of poem, the divine epic superior to anything in antiquity.

Sahitya Akademi Awards 2011

Ramachandra Guha (Winner of Sahitya Akademi Award 2011 for English)

A jury representing the 23 Indian languages chose the winners of the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Awards this year. Under the chairmanship of the Akademi President, Sunil Gangopadhyay the awards winners chosen by the jury were approved by the Executive Board of the Sahitya Akademi. Ramachandra Guha(English), for his narrative history, was among the winners of Sahitya Akademi Awards 2011.

Among the novelists were:
Baldev Singh (Punjabi)
Gopalakrishna Pai (Kannada)
Kashinath Singh (Hindi)
Kshetri Bira (Manipuri)
Kalpanakumari Devi (Odia)
Atul Kanakk (Rajasthani)

The poets included in the winners list were:
Late Kabin Phukan (Assamese)
Manindra Gupta (Bengali)
Premananda Mosahari (Bodo)
Naseem Shafaie (Kashmiri)
Melvyn Rodrigues (Konkani)
Harekrishna Satapathy (Sanskrit)
Aditya Kumar Mandi (Santali)
Khaleel Mamoon (Urdu)

For their books on essays Lalit Magotra (Dogri), Grace (Marathi) and Samala Sadasiva (Telugu) received the award.

SAMANVAY: IHC INDIAN LANGUAGES' FESTIVAL, 2011

Samanvay’: IHC Indian Languages’ Festival was inaugurated with the lighting of a torch on 16 December at India Habitat Center by two Jnanpith winning poets and Senior Fellows of the Sahitya Akademi, Kunwar Narain and Sitakant Mahapatra, along with IHC Director Raj Liberhan. During this 3-day event, 63 writers from 14 languages will discuss upon various issues and read from their work.
In the inaugural session, Raj Liberhan announced the annual ‘Samanvay Bhasha Samman’ award for young writers who have worked to advance literature in Indian languages. The ‘Samanvay Bhasha Samman’ will carry a 1 lakh rupee cash award as well. Chairman of the Indian Languages Newspapers Association (ILNA), Paresh Nath, announced an annual award of 50,000 rupees for journalists working in Indian languages – the ‘Samanvay Bhashai Patrakarita Samman’.
Padma Vibhushan Kunwar Narain spoke during the inaugural session about the importance of this event, and said that ‘Samanvay’ would prove to be a coming together of literature from all Indian languages and in the future we will be able to discuss here our issues of greatest importance. Oriya poet Sitakant Mahapatra said that the synthesis one notices in Indian people is the same synthesis that makes literature in Indian languages an Indian Literature. Raj Liberhan then invited two of the main young designers and organizers of the festival – Satyanand Nirupam and Giriraj Kiradoo – on stage. He spoke of how such meaningful events would encourage creativity among young writers.

The topic for the opening session was: ‘Is there an Indian Literature?’ Various writers from all parts of the country were part of this discussion, moderated by renowned Malayalam poet K. Satchidanandan. He spoke about how Indian literature is one (unlike Nihar Ranajan Rai’s contention that it be spoken of in the plural because it is written in many languages), despite the multilingualism. Dalit Marathi writer Laxman Gaikwad also expressed his views. Renowned Gujarati writer Sitanshu Yashaschandra said that Indian literature was multilingual from the very beginning with works not only in Sanskrit but also Prakrit and other languages. English academic and writer Alok Rai too took part in the discussion. Chairman of the Lalit Kala Akademi and renowned Hindi poet Ashok Vajpeyi said that multilingualism precisely is the point of Indian Literature, and this diversity must be protected.

The reading session saw poetry readings from Sitakant Mahapatra (Oriya), K. Satchidanandan (Malayalam), Sitanshu Yashaschandra (Gujarati), Ashok Vajpeyi (Hindi), Mangalesh Dabral (Hindi), C.P. Deval (Rajasthani), Radha Vallabh Tripathi (Sanskrit), Gangesh Gunjan (Maithili) and Malkhan Singh (Hindi). To close the evening, famous Sufi singer Madan Gopal Singh and the Ensemble Chaar Yaar presented a mesmerising performance based on the poems of renowned Hindi and Maithili poet Nagarjun.

DAY 2:
Discussions on Marginalized Literatures at Samanvay: IHC Indian Languages’ Festival
The second day of Samanvay: IHC Indian Languages’ Festival began with discussion around writing in Assamese and Punjabi. The subject under discussion for the Assamese session was ‘New Challenges for Women Writers’ which began with Nitoo Das’ fiery question: “Have we moved beyond tokenism that’s given to us by a masculinist tradition?” All four speakers unanimously agreed that the time for tokenistic awards was past. Another concern was voiced, with all writers agreeing that, for the contemporary Assamese woman writer, not only is there the constant pressure to be a ‘woman’, but also the pressure to be ‘North Eastern’. Apart from questions of representation, experimentation in form was also discussed, with new evocations of folk traditions being addressed in context of the cosmopolitanism of the Assamese modern female self. The session ended with readings by Arupa Patangia Kalita and Bonti Senchowa.
The second session was on the topic of Dalit Love Poetry in Punjabi. “Dalit poetry is not the poetry of hatred. Rather, it is the poetry of love,” began Punjabi poet Desraj Kali, who was moderating the session. Nirupama Dutt spoke of one of Punjabi Dalit poetry’s strongest voices, Lal Singh ‘Dil’ and his deeply political life, which ultimately ended in exile. A deeply engaged discussion on what it actually means to be a Dalit subject/writer/activist in Punjab followed, with poet Balbir Madhopuri saying that, even as there wasn’t anyone on stage wearing the ‘traditional’ markers of being a Punjabi, it did not mean that they did not belong to Punjab – and that this was precisely the thought that Punjabi Dalit love poetry sought to counter. Dr. Gurbachan talked about ‘sangha’/communal poetry of the late 18th century, citing poetry of couples in love who wrote together: of Sadju Gulab Das, and Peero, a Dalit Muslim woman, and Vajir Singh, a Dalit man in love with Rang Devi, an upper caste Hindu. The session asked questions of the construction of language itself, and how Dalit love poetry attempts to break these given constructs. The session ended with readings by Madan Veera, Nirupama Dutt and Balbir Madhopuri.
Madan Veera, Balbir Madhopuri and Desraj Kali
The post lunch session saw autobiographical writings from Kerala, moderated by K. Satchidanandan who talked about how autobiographies are never “dull” literatures because they are not only an insight into oneself but talk about the human condition in general. C.K. Janu started the discussion by addressing the need for an “Adivasi” literature, how a state like Kerala, where the literacy rate is the highest, still sees no recognition for the tribals and how women are twice affected by this on levels of both class and gender. Next was Sister Jesme, who talked about the marginalization that she encountered within the Church and addressed how religion and politics mesh together to bind a woman. This was followed by a moving personal account by Nalini Jameela who talked about a sex worker’s life. The last speaker was Pokkudan, who is one of the leading environmentalists in India, and touched upon politics in Kerela and his identity as a Dalit which earmarked him as a target of the party.
In the Urdu session, renowned Urdu poet Sheen Kaaf Nizam, Prof. Sadique, Alok Srivastav and Giriraj Kiradoo debated about the death of the Mushaira. All the poets rejected the idea that the Mushaira as a tradition is on the wane, rather, it has changed. After a question and answer session with the audience, the poets all read out their work.

Alok Srivastav , Sheen Kaaf Nizam, Prof. Sadique, and Giriraj Kiradoo
The evening ended with an exciting qawwali performance by the Nizami brothers.

DAY 3:
‘Hindi publishers need to reach their readers’

In the morning sessions of the third and final day of Samanvay: IHC Indian Languages’ Festival, authors from Tamil and English shared their experiences in writing.
The Tamil session discussed ‘Women Writing the Body’. Iconic Tamil poet P. Sivakami moderated the session, which also included the poets Kutti Revathi, Salma, Sukirtharani and Malathi Maithri, who talked about their experiences of bias due to their gender and how poetry, and the body in poetry became their site of resistance against this discrimination.
Arundhathi Subramaniam
The session concluded with poetry readings by the Tamil poets. Arshia Sattar and Arundhathi Subramaniam also read English translations of Kutti Revathi and Salma’s poems.

English writers, Arshia Sattar, Basharat Peer, Annie Zaidi and Aman Sethi, moderated by Chandrahas Choudhury, talked about the challenges of non-fiction writing, especially long-form non-fiction, in the Indian scenario on the next panel entitled “Indian English Writing: Beyond Fiction”.


The consensus was that the biggest factor contributing to this was the lack of resources directed towards it by Indian publishers. They also spoke about the difficulties of translation they encountered in the journalistic and book-length work. This was followed by readings by Rahul Pandita and Arundhathi Subramaniam from their books of non-fiction.


Rahul Pandita
The post-lunch session on Bengali talked about poetry and the popular, and featured renowned poets Nabarun Bhattacharya, Subodh Sarkar, Ujjal Singha and Srijato, on a panel moderated by academic Dr. Paromita Chakravarti. They also read their poetry, in the original and in English translations.

The final session was a discussion by publishers, editors and writers on the search for new readers in Hindi publishing. They spoke about how there certainly were readers for Hindi literature, but that it was imperative to find new ways to reach out to them.

S. Nirupam, Rajendra Yadav and Ravish Kumar
Ravish Kumar of NDTV said that TV had managed to find a new breed of super-viewers for itself and that literature needed to do something similar. The consensus was that it was a multi-level problem that publishers, distributors and writers all needed to work to solve. On the panel were novelist and editor of Hans, Rajendra Yadav, Aruni Maheshwari of Vani Prakashan, Neeta Gupta of Yatra Books, poet and editor Mangalesh Dabral, and co-editor of Pratilipi Giriraj Kiradoo. The session was moderated by S. Nirupam of Delhi Press. Prior to the session, Mahesh Verma read his poetry and Prabhat Ranjan read from his forthcoming book, Badnaam Basti.

The 3-day festival ‘Samanvay’ concluded with an address by Raj Liberhan, Director of the India Habitat Centre, with an announcement for the second Indian Languages’ Festival to be held in November 2012.

Book Review: 'Mafia Queens of Mumbai' by S. Hussain Zaidi

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