Kazuo Ishiguro writes in the Remains of the Day:
Perhaps it is indeed time I began to look at this whole matter of bantering more enthusiastically. After all, when one thinks about it, it is not such a foolish thing to indulge in – particularly if it is the case that in bantering lies the key to human warmth.
Looks like history of all nations is the same. In Crabwalk, Gunter Grass deems it to be a clogged toilet, full of shit that is all things Nazi. Seems pretty damn apt for India of today — in a different way, though — where revisionists are running riot, on occasions literally.
History, or to be more precise, the history we Germans have repeatedly mucked up, is a clogged toilet. We flush and flush, but the shit keeps rising.
And Haruki Murakami turns the Greek tragedy upside down.
And the sense of tragedy – according to Aristotle – comes, ironically enough, not from the protagonist’s weak points but from his good qualities. Do you know what I’m getting at? People are driven into tragedy not by their defects but by their virtues… Oedipus is drawn into tragedy not because of laziness or stupidity, but because of his courage and honesty.
From Waiting For The Barbarians.
My torturers were not interested in degrees of pain. They were interested only in demonstrating to me what it meant to live in a body, as a body, a body which can entertain notions of justice only as long as it is whole and well, which very soon forgets them when its head is gripped and a pipe is pushed down its gullet and pints of salt water are poured into it… They came to my cell to show me the meaning of humanity, and in the space of an hour they showed me a great deal