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Glocal Colloquies For publication details, please visit: echecs16.info All About H. Hatterr – Desani's 'Novel Gesture' Chaudhury. ALL ABOUT H. HATTERR. GOVINDAS VISHNOODAS DESANI (–) was born to Indian parents in Nairobi, Kenya, and raised in Sind. All about H. Hatterr by G. V. Desani, , Penguin edition, in English - Rev. ed.
Nov 06, Pages download. Nov 06, Pages. Wildly funny and wonderfully bizarre, All About H. Hatterr is one of the most perfectly eccentric and strangely absorbing works modern English has produced. Hatterr is the son of a European merchant officer and a lady from Penang who has been raised and educated in missionary schools in Calcutta. It is not pure English; it is like Shakespeare, Joyce, and Kipling, gloriously impure.
The via media? Chronic malaria and pneumonia-plus.
Whereupon, a local litigation for my possession ensued. The odds were all in favour of the India-resident Dundee-born Scot, who was trading in jute. Maybe, she lives. Who cares? Rejoicing at the just conclusion of the dictate of his conscience, and armed with the legal interpretation of the testament left by my post-mortem seaman parent, willing I be brought up Christian, and the court custody award, the jute factor had me adopted by an English Missionary Society, as one of their many Oriental and mixed-Oriental orphan-wards.
And, thus it was that I became a sahib by adoption, the Christian lingo English being my second vernacular from the orphan-adoption age onwards. The E. Society looked after me till the age of fourteen or thereabouts. It was then that I found the constant childhood preoccupation with the whereabouts of my mother unbearable, the religious routine unsuited to my temperament, the evangelical stuff beyond my ken, and Rev. Help others! Knowing that the most deserving party needing help was self, I decided to chuck the school, get out into the open spaces of India, seek my lebansraum, and win my bread and curry all on my own.
And one warm Indian autumn night, I bolted as planned, having pinched, for voluntary study, an English dictionary, the Rev. From that day onwards, my education became free and my own business. Hatterr, Hali encodes the writer's vision of cosmic creation and human destiny, marrying Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic and other Indian religious traditions into a cathartic drama.
Eclectic in nature, many of these stories and fables had been first published in literary anthologies and magazines since , including The Noble Savage ed.
Mostly humorous, they rely upon comic timing and incongruous anomalies in contemporary life. Their mood ranges from bleakness and sombre supernatural to the satiric. Apart from these, there are about thirty five contributions, papers and lectures published in various books, journals and periodicals and the unfinished Rissala— a compendium of his works that he was working on after retirement. Unfortunately this unfinished work is now untraceable. A few other documents including pages from Nadi texts which Desani unsuccessfully attempted to get carbon dated were entrusted to the Boston University during his life.
V All About H. Desani, All About H. Hatterr, are from this Penguin India rpt. To return to Rushdie, he often uses compound words where a native calque is combined with an English word to masquerade as Indian English neologism.
Actual Indian English compounds combine a native calque with an English word to signify a third referent with specifically Indian characteristics , eg.
Perhaps the truth about All AboutH. Hatterris penned by an author who does not fit into his family and homeland, and yet, ironically, goes on to become the spokesperson of that very homeland sponsored by none other than the British Ministry of Information. In brief, Desani typifies the restless maverick with no nation to call his own.
The work focuses on a protagonist who is simultaneously a hero and anti-hero of indeterminate origin, neither British nor Indian, never getting things right and always proving to be the proverbial loser. Banerrji, the always-inevitable rescuer of the equally-always-down-in-the-dumpsHatterr economically, legally, socially and ego wise, remains forever the supplicant native, gratified at getting any chance to assist such a great being! Their exchanges, frequently at cross purposes highlight the fact that all ridiculousness, in the end, is relative and that it could provide a fresh perspective on the mutual interdependence of the coloniser and the colonized Mahajan.
Imposture and masqueradingare, more often than not,the crux of the metamorphoses in the text. Thus impurity, exclusion, reversal, topsyturvydomare unabashedly celebrated with least regard for established boundaries in All AboutH.
Glocal Colloquies: An International Journal of World Literatures and Cultures Volume I; Issue I; May Chaudhury 45 both inextricably tied to the historical and geographical location while yearning to be free of the constructions of the imperial power and wary of the replacements; and [b] the fragmentary postmodern self, usually perceived as a 'modern' being that searches for unity.
The resultant inter-actionist self at once creates many selves and many worlds, but rejects the totalizing claims of each, thus bracketing postmodernism and postcolonialism as contesting signifiers for the same signified.
Sir, the rank and file is entitled to know.
Author to Indian middle-man : Sir, I identify it a gesture. Indian middle-man to Author : Sir, there is no immediate demand for gestures. There is immediate demand for novels.
Sir, we are literary agents, not free agents. Author to Indian middle-man : Sir, I identify it a novel. Sir, itemise it accordingly. Hatterr, his work, do believe: and God bless the Duke of Argyll! Paradox thus becomes the central paradigm for the work, its genesis, the author and the protagonist, and permeates the linguistic texture as well.
IX Structure The subterranean method in madness, mentioned earlier, becomes more pronounced as we encounter the making of fiction. Each of the seven chapters is given an intriguing and often half-finished title — Chapter I. For instance, Chapter V. Assemble, ye fellers! Hear this dreadful charge!
A reduction ad absurdum. A partnership, a Quisseperabit? Questions: Is youth a desirable age? Why is it easy to sit upon a mountain and not on a needle? Why Life prevents a feller from carrying a carrot to a donkey, instead, makes him carry a donkey to a carrot — more or less?
They hate mankind. They maintain that human nature is rotten to the core!
I am often tempted to agree with the school, and join the classes of hate. Wildly funny and wonderfully bizarre, All About H. Hatterr is one of the most perfectly eccentric and strangely absorbing works modern English has produced. Hatterr is the son of a European merchant officer and a lady from Penang who has been raised and educated in missionary schools in Calcutta.
It is not pure English; it is like Shakespeare, Joyce, and Kipling, gloriously impure.
Eliot "Bless him, [Desani] does mash it up, bending orthography, stretching syntax, mixing in shards of Hindi, Hungarian, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, German and a goodly dose of balderdash, whilst tossing in references to Whitman, Shakespeare, Socrates, Freud and appeals to Kama and Laxmi as well as to Allah and Christ.
Only a quasi-outsider an Irishman, say could have such an irreverent ear for the Anglo-Saxon tongue. But Hatterr is more readable by miles than Finnegans Wake , and a lot more fun. It was the first great stroke of the decolonizing pen. You simply let the language flow like the lyrics of a Calypso song, or a subdued show of stroboscopic lights. Desani is a writer of great originality, who is making a contribution…all his own.
Snow "Desani is undoubtedly a master in the creative use of English—puns, parodies, colloquialisms—and an accomplished artist in the invention of a new language.