Chev .Prof. Baby M Varghese
Speaking about the brand of writers I am tempted to say that some writers are born and some othersc are made.Our writers are seen grouped under such categories in view of their attitude and aptitude.M K Harikumar , belonging to the first rare band of writers, is noted for his originality. If originality is measured by the yardstick of invention of events or incidents or episodes he can claim too be an original writer.
He may not be a popular writer and poplarity is not that measures one;s originality.This impression is based on my reflections on AKSHARAJAALAKAM' , a regular feature of Kala Kaumudi'.
' AKSHARAJAALAKAM' serves the purpose of a mirror holding up to nature. It is a literary casement reflecting a lot of things drawn from life and literature. It brings out the luminous mind of the columnist perceiving with critical acme. He views things in his own unique style.AKSHARAJAALAKAM, no doubt , is a magic window opening to a variety of things and experience.
My special reference goes to certain issues of august 2008.Harikumar suggests two phases in each column maintaining a uniform pattern.
The first reference is all about a particular theme and the treatment of which is very striking.Every issue is brought out with Harikumar's special touch. It may be about men and m,atters;it may be about literary theories and concepts. There is nithing uncommon about the things said but there is something strange about the way of saying it.
Then he goes on to reflect his responses on various aspectsof life and literature, ancient and modern, in the next phase. You may or may not agree with his conclusions. But it exhibits his own style or vision; it shows his 'brand'. His mission is neither pleasing nor disgusting. It is the expression of his impressions without any prejudices. There are bits of knowledge , packed with novel ideas. It is eithe due to his critical appreciation or evaluation of things drawn from life and art. Whatever is dealt with under the sun has its own originality and sensibility.Openness and stubbornness attribute to his masculine style. He is carried off by an ocean of events, sights or experiences in the second of Aksharajaalakam.
In the issue of August 3 Harikumar introduces Jugu Surayya as a powerful columnist at whose magical touch everything turns in to humorous vein in the light shade of philosophy. His writings suggest that it is cruel to laugh at the poor and good to laugh at the rich - ' a Jugular philosophy of life.'His column in the' Times of India' entitled as 'Jugular vein' is highly suggestive of his subtle humour and powerful satire.
Harikumar looks upon Oscar Wilde with deep concern in another issue of August 10 Oscar Wilde was held in high esteem by people all over the world during the last century.Oscar has become a legend like Shakespeare and his name is more than a 'brand' in literature. The passage of time doesnot make him out fashioned; he is still contemporary in the way of dealing with. This Irish writer , just like Shakepseare , is not of an age but for all time.
In the last issue of August Harikumar expounds a new theory of art in the context of the modern life. His views on art may not go in agreement with the traditional concepts of - Art for Art's Sake or Art for Life's Sake. He says art is not for life nor life for art. It is nothing but the application of artthat matters. Art is deemed to be a consumer item. Harikumar states that in the din and bustle of modern life we are busy and we develop a very miserly attiyude towards reading - no time for reading books nor doing things in an elaborate style. We are driven by a glimpse of things .In the busy schedule one is confined to oneself suited to the rhythm of 'ring tone ' says Harikumar.
These arguements do not conform to those of the established schools of art.First, art is for art's sake and it is like a bud that blossoms. It is a spontaneous creativity without any pressure. It is
due to the irresistable urge from within.Secondly, art for life's sake is a very common theory bringing out the social aspect of it. Art is, no doubt, life seen through temperament. Art , being the expression of life, cannot devoid of it. It keeps a mirror up to nature or life.There is no literature without life and literature, at bottom, is ' the criticism of life'.These arguements were very prevalent and at the time of Mundassery and Kuttikrishna Marar.
' To be great is to be misunderstood'. Harikumar's' Aksharajaalakam', a powerful literary and contemporary exercise , bears testimony to this Emerson's statement.
Chev. Prof. Baby M. Varghese
MAR BASELEOUS College