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Brainfuck - phew!
January 2012

date: 29-01-2012 22:20
subject: Brainfuck
security: Public
tags:#brainfuck "ismail kadare" "milan kundera
There is a wierd satisfaction, a brainfuck if you will, when the books one is reading strangely intertwine. Its an incredible coincidence, that two very unrelated books somehow turn out to be related; have chapters that somehow complement one another and speak about the same things. This has happened to me a few times.

Around the time my son was being born, which was more than a year back, I was reading Ismail Kadare's THE FILE ON H.. It was a story, a satire about a couple of Irish-American scholars travelling to Albania in the 1930's to trace the origins of the Western Epics Iliad and Odyssey; to find out whether Homer was indeed one person. Their belief was that the oral story-telling traditions of Middle-Eastern and Central Europe held the key to the mystery of how one person could indeed come up with so vast and complex a story as that of the Iliad and Odyssey. Around the same time I was reading Kundera's The Joke. Imagine my surprise and the warmth inside when the book held sub-plot of a Slavic musician who was trying to come to terms with the decay of his folk art; and a whole chapter dedicated to the origin and nuances of Middle-Eastern and Central European folk songs and story-telling. It remains a fact that the nuances of pentatonic scales are lost on me.

Now imagine my situation whilst in the toilet a couple of days back, when I was reading Nine Lives by William Dalrymple, in the chapter The Singer of Epics about an illiterate Rajasthani folk singer called Mohan Bhopa, Dalrymple proceeded to point to the existence of a Milman Parry, a Homeric scholar, who really did undertake a project in the Slavic regions of Europe with the exactly same objective as that of the two young Irish-American scholars in Kadare's story. That, my friends, was when shit really hit the roof.
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