Writing that makes rage pleasant

A Word with You, World is a product of a search for a new expression of the Dalit personality, in the words of Amrita Dutta, reviewing Siddalingaiah’s autobiography in The Indian Express. In the poet’s own words, in contrast to his poetry, the autobiography is not meant to be read in rallies. It is meant to be read in a library or at home, to be contemplated, and thought about. It has been written calmly. It expresses the insults and the suffering Siddalingaiah saw in a humorous form. The book satirises the caste Hindus, jokes about them, their traditions and arrogance. It depicts the sufferings they inflicted but it does not hate them.

 

Siddalingaiah’s material is pain, hunger and poverty, but transmuted by laughter, what the critic D.R. Nagaraj called “writing that made rage pleasant”. Siddalingaiah relishes the humour when he finds it, not afraid to send up the boring but earnest activist and his droning speeches or laugh at himself being mistaken for “a bus conductor”.

Read the full review here.                                                                                                             Buy the book here.