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Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Posted by
Venu K.M
Malayalam - a language spoken by 30-35 million people (about 0.5- 0.6
percent of all living humans!)- certainly needs to be "protected"!
At the same time, it also needs to be unshackled of its narcissistic
fetishism; you will certainly and most naturally like to communicate
with other Malayalees ; but your editor is more likely to decide that
"this kind of stuff(often a translation, or any original text
comprising a particular political theme or an idea rarely discussed in
the mainstream Malayam socio-political and cultural space)will not
suit the taste of our readers".
I am afraid dearth of creativity itself, or language per se is not
the problem rather than the extremely debilitating habit of not
looking around and relocating ourselves vis a vis the rest of humans.
As we prepare to fight against newer forms of onslaughts on our
language, we owe a concurrent commitment to radicalize it by attempts
in democratizing, de-gendering,
de-patriarchalizing , de-casting /de-brahmanizing the language.
For example, we are still able to cling on to cliches like
"agolavalkkaranathinte chathikkuzhikal"as evidenced by the Women's
Commission's advertisement on March 08 suggesting women and girls ways
to defend themselves against "peedanam" : virtually to shun public
places, keep out of the range of hostile mobile phones (as they would
be photographed and ultimately end up as victims of some sex racket)
keeping out of the range of cyber crimes by avoiding chats,etc through
the internet and so on. Surprisingly but quite understandably from the
Malayalee/Kerala background of common sense, it invokes hardly any
idea of resistence by the women either collectively or as ndividuals.
We look as though more than complacent with our language and culture
and apparently don't want to instil dynamism in the language..why else
we continue to buy the drab stories and features of these mainstream
Malayalam newspapers and journals without any questions? Don't we
realize that by employing a feudal,patriarchal and brahmanical
vocabulary ostensibly catering to the peoples' tastes they often
literally "cover" events, rather than speak truth? It is probable that
many of us no longer want to move ahead of the little circles of
professions,peculiar ways of realpolitik-ing , family gatherings,so on and so forth.

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always want to defend peace, justice, peoples' right to love each other and live with dignity,struggles against parochial visions and hatred;instinctively a defender of socialist and democratic values