Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Joseph Conrad’

Light that Failed

How excited would Harper Collins be, to publish a book about a British woman who fell in love with an Indian ….

What if it was a English woman and an Indian soldier?  |  Click for larger image.

What if it was a English woman and an Indian soldier? | Click for larger image.

Kohima was the scene of an Allied victory in the World War II that changed the contours of the war in Asia. The Japanese who had been advancing steadily into Asia after the success of their Burma campaign in 1941-42 were beaten back…

The “Battle of Kohima”, was a bloody affair. It lasted for three months, from April to June 1944, and left over 10,000 dead on both sides.

Easterine Kire’s Mari – a story of love in the time of war … lovers here are Mari, short for Khrielievu Mari, the 17-year-old daughter of a treasury officer in the district commissioner’s office in Kohima, and Staff Sargeant Victor (Vic), a British soldier in the India army. The novel is in the first person, a semi-fictional autobiography written from the stories that Mari told Kire, her niece, about those momentous years of her life, and from a diary that she kept in those years. (via War and love in Kohima.).

Anglo-woman and Indian soldier

How excited would Harper Collins be, to publish a book about a British woman who fell in love with an Indian …

A White Man going ‘native’ was a marked man. Joseph Conrad’s writings exposed the barbarity and depravity of Colonial Europe – only to finally blame the ‘native’ for ‘reducing’ the White Man to barbarity.

Rudyard Kipling tried to erase all his prior ‘connections’ with India, after emigrating to America. He tried has hand at ‘White’ themes like Captains Courageous(1897). What became famous were books like Kim and The Light That Failed (1890).

The story of Merle Oberon, a part-Indian actress in Hollywood, is a good instance (more in the insipid story Queenie by Michael Korda, her nephew). Merle Oberon’s biggest struggle was to overcome the ‘drop of tar’ in her blood. Her nephew, Micahel Korda, used her story to get a book commission, that was also made into a movie. Her great niece, Shelley Conn. is being cast by Spielberg, (whose ET was ‘co-incidentally’ similar to Satyajit Rai script.).

For Indians to find allurement in such themes, is incorrect, at least politically.



Europe sweeps all Top 10 Pickpocket Cities positions

Crime across Europe

A recent report that gained some level of exposure was on the global pickpocket scene. This report showed that Europe was the global leader in pickpocketing.

Europe takes Top 10 positions on pickpocket stats (Chart courtesy - livemint.com).

Europe takes Top 10 positions on pickpocket stats (Chart courtesy - livemint.com).

Europe takes Top 10 positions on pickpocket stats (Chart courtesy – livemint.com). A new study by the travel review site TripAdvisor shows the top 10 places its members tend to encounter the thieves. While pickpockets can strike anywhere, TripAdvisor found the most frequently reported places to be European cities with grand outdoor attractions. (via Top 10 Pickpocket Cities: Watch Your Wallet and Avoid Thieves When Traveling to These Destinations – ABC News).

Another report points out

The index is far from scientific – TripAdvisor, a leading travel booking and information site, culled the data by calculating the number of times travelers used the term “pickpocket” in TripAdvisor.com reviews over the past 12 months.

But the findings do suggest that theft seems to be on the rise in the cities on the list. Paris jumped from No. 5 in 2009 to No. 3 this year, while Athens went from ninth in ‘09 to fifth this year. And Madrid, Costa Brava, Lisbon, Tenerife, and London weren’t on the Top 10 last year.

Poster of Jamaica Inn (1939) Starring - Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara, Director: Alfred Hitchcock

Poster of Jamaica Inn (1939) Starring - Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara, Director: Alfred Hitchcock

When the State commissions crimes!

Behind every great fortune there is a crime – Honoré de Balzac.

For many centuries, piracy, slavery, were encouraged, licenced by European States. Balzac’s statement only be understood with that background.

A 1936 novel by Daphne Du Maurier’s was set in the Bodmin Moor, Cornwall, based on and named after the real Jamaica Inn, a Bolventor pub, that evolved from a coaching inn in 1750, and went onto become famous as a smugglers’ base. Her other book, was the The Frenchman’s Creek (1942), was based on the life of a pirate. Before du Maurier’s romanticization of crime, in the best Anglo Saxon propaganda tradition, books to ‘white wash’ slavery and piracy – like Mr.Midshipman Easy, by Captain Frederick Marryat (Retd. Royal Navy) in 1836, were published.

Coppola’s Apocalypse Now was inspired by Joseph Conrad’s The Heart of Darkness. A book examines this phenomenon tangentially – when a ‘licenced’ fighter goes ‘private’! In Asia. Like Britons did in India.

Remember O’Dyer and O’Dwyer!

Crime in The Great Recession

Some rather interesting crime stories have come out from the West in the last 2 years. Last year, January, saw a spate of bank robberies in New York – with 5 bank robberies in one day really giving the police some anxious weeks. July this year saw another report on the changing narcotics scenario in Europe. This latest report on Europe having high levels of petty crime are a part of that trend.

The vestigal remains of Bharat-tantra have ensured that India has low crime, small police force and low crime.

%d bloggers like this: