In the latest Vikatan coulmn, Sujatha writes on existentialism and Jean Paul Sartre, a popular philosopher of existentialism. He also mentions G Nagarajan’s Naalai Matrumoru Naaley as the first tamil novel based on existentialism. Incidentally, existentialism was something that I was attracted to. I have to say I was attracted to a ‘theory’. I had mentioned some of the best books of Sartre and Nagarajan’s in my book tagging post. More than a theory, existentialism enables you see life with a different perspective. Stop. With this hyped up definition of existentialism if you frantically google or grab a book by Sartre, you would come to kill me. Like many …isms, existentialism has its own influences. There are critics who argue that existentialism is nothing but nonsense. After reading a couple of books on the subject, I don’t agree with them. Stop, again.
Now when Sujatha goes on explain existentialism in a popular magazine like Vikatan, I immediately send the link to a friend who introduced me to Saatre. I knew by diluting the heavy existentialist theory, Sujatha will be cursed by those who know about it. It happened. Ravi Srinivaas, in his blog, writes a letter to Vikatan editor that Sujatha has mis-guided people on the theory and has blacked-out some facts on existentialism. Following him, Venkat, in his blog mentions that Sujatha has been doing this for long and makes a mock of future Katrathum Petrathum column. Though I’m not sure if Venkat agrees with existentialist values but if Srinivaas does, given the way he details on the theory and how Sujatha has mis-quoted it, he wouldn’t have wrote that letter to Vikatan. That’s what existentialism[assumes that people are entirely free and thus responsible for what they make of themselves is] all about.
Sujatha has been consistent since Kanayaazhi days in demystifying such grand intellectual /scientific theories that were possessions of the high-browed. Through his many columns and books [like Thalami Seyalagam] he has done this diluting to reach more people and not allowing the knowledge to be in the hold of a few. I personally feel this time with existentialism, his explanation was diluted and would certainly mislead many but also it might induce many to read more on the unheard word called existentialism. Having seen previous assaults on Sujatha, I have to say both Ravi and Venkat have thrown spite on Sujatha, many a times and it makes me feel this is one of those times, they got a better chance to do it.
On a related note, I’ve read Chaaru Nivedhita’s columns and I firmly believe many of his writings are written just to go six inches above your head. His recent review of Chandramukhi was a
good better one. He compares the Baba failure and Chandramukhi‘s success of Rajini and goes on to say that Rajini’s recent trip to Himalayaas was just a stunt. While I could agree to some of them [ the so called vulgar jokes in Chandramukhi], I cannot agree that Rajini is having a pleasure trip to himalayaas. But even before laundry listing such vulgarities in Chandramukhi, he probably should be re-reading his novels and Konal Pakkangal. I can atleast spot a dozen silly stuff there like his list of Chandramukhi blunders. I may not because, I reverberate, that’s what existentialism[assumes that people are entirely free and thus responsible for what they make of themselves is] all about. Thanks Ragu for the pointer.