Journal of Arts & Ideas, no. 4 (July-Sept 1983) p. 2.


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From the Editor

BFEW years ago I was reading a collection of essays on music (Alapini by W.H. Deshpande). The author discussing a very distinguished vocalist was confronted with the bandish^s which the concerned vocalist had himself authored. Deshpande in his essay discusses these compositions as literature and then. suddenly goes on the defensive declaring that literature has nothing to do with music. His argument appears to be that shabda is irrelevant to music. Music cannot be composed of silences, as Prof. Ranade points out in his article in this issue. W.H. Deshpande would agree but would go on to argue (and Ranade would agree with him) that the words, i.e., the literary cognition is not central to the aesthetics of music.

But then what happens when someone enjoys a ghazal rendered by Begum Akhtar or a composition of Tukaram or Purandaradas by Bhimsen Joshi? We do not know. The point is that the question of 'content', 'continuity', 'modernism', should also be debated in the context of music. What perceptions do we have when an ancient tradition like that of khaydl gayaki is taken a fresh look at in a hitherto unexplored manner? The essays by Ashok Ranade and Neela Khopkar try to grapple with some of these problems.

To an extent, the problem of continuity, the problem of the language of painting (not unlike the language of music), the temporal and spatial aspects of art, are also the concern of Pranabranjan Ray's essay. Meenakshi Mukherjee's analysis of Father Panchali also deals with the

July-September 1983


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