Creating words

8 August 2009 at 4:46 AM | Posted in News | Leave a comment

This post appears in the exchange on mixing Sanskrit and English:

“सर्वे जन्तु रुटिना: ! सर्वे जन्तु निराशया:
सर्वे छिद्राणि पंचन्तु ! मा कश्चित दु:ख-लॉग भरेत !

“Mardhekar always had a choice to NOT write Sanskrit mixed with English. Yet he wrote those lines. (And numerous others. Puncture-leli ratra can be easily replaced by malool ratra.) What about his usage like Motariche KLINNA manogat? There is not a single word KLINN in English or Marathi. It is a mixture of khinna + cleaner, and the amazing usage of Motari che klinna manogat, while prima facie talks about the motor-car’s mental state, it goes beyond the object and talks about the Cleaner (Of the Driver-cleaner pair). What an amazing usage.

“I feel new idioms are created everywhere: in poetry, in drama, in cinema as years go by. It is inevitable.”

Although I can’t read Sanskrit, I agree that writers not only have the liberty but the duty to create words. Multilingual writers have an advantage in this regard, because they can put together words or syllables from two or more different languages. It is the job of the literary critic to “unpack” or “decode” the new word. To do this, the literary critic must be multilingual as well.

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