My Online Writings - 2004 - '07
VED from VICTORIA INSTITUTIONS
It is foretold! The torrential flow of inexorable destiny!
Godfather: What props his pedestal
I do not know Italian. I have heard it spoken only on very rare occasions.
Yet, when I read the book, The Godfather , many, many years ago, it was in many ways a revelation for me, and sort of a source of answer to my querying mind.
I am sure that many of you have read the book with rapt attention, with a sense of sensing a hallowed mood. The reader may simply be overwhelmed by the mood of an exotic social communication that existed as a sort of subculture to the American English social scene.
Yet, I did get a stranger feeling. The feeling that I did get was that the mood that existed in the mafia families, sort of reflected the Indian structured family command scenario. That is when, when all the coins are in their proper places.
I do not have a copy of this book with me now. Therefore, I need to juggle out pieces of the theme from my memory.
The foremost factor that struck me was of the term respect. Show your respect. It more or less emphasised the existence of a language that carved for this, as a minimum requirement of social communication.
Another thing that made me quite sure of the undercurrent was the fact that consigliore (I do not know whether the spelling is right, for I write from memory) or the chief assistant of the Don; the person who is his soul keeper, should definitely be an Italian, or to be more specific a Sicilian. It more or less emphasised that the command structure, the direction of reverence, the link in the chain of veneration and of indisputable discipline etc. are in the correct mode. The spikes and grooves in the communication should be in perfect alignment.
It is like a military command structure. The person, who is an outsider, may not discern the power of the command that may come in a soft voice; yet the man who is a link in the structure is in a stature of immovable discipline. There is a vice like grip on the lower person in the line, who is not given much room for manoeuvrability; the choice he has is between absolute compliance and complete indiscipline; there is no space in-between.
If the consigliore is not a Sicilian, then the command line simply goes blurred at that link, and more or less, makes the Don powerless from that point down. In the book, Tom, even though he is not an Italian, is given the post. However, the fact remains that he has been brought up in that language mood since his infancy. (Does the Sicilian dialect of Italian have any specific areas, which naturally produced the right environment for Mafias?)
Now going beyond these themes, I must say that the book was very interesting to read. As an informative book, I think it did picture the corroding of the social and administrative structures by a language group, which had its philosophies mostly contradictory to that extruded by English. Nepotism, corruption, hooligans who existed with a sort of military discipline, crude use of the concept of gratitude, feudal servitude and it corollary, feudal protégés, and many other vile themes are given a halo.
The feeling that these things and persons are the stuff, of which heroes are made of, is the moral in the story. Yet, I have always felt that it is easy to be vile and destructive; the meanest in society can build up vile organisations, with supreme finesse; to make a sophisticated thing, like an inspiring social structure, or an elegant administration require much more brainpower, motivation, capacity, calibre, personal qualities, national heritage and also, an intelligent language. All these the heroes of this book, and their protégés, lack.
When I saw the film version, even though it exhibited a classical touch, in truth, I found that when the Italian communication came in English, the force of the language that naturally extracted the sense of respect, and the forced the command lines into proper places, was not visible.
When Europe comes into England, would the mafia also, come there with their bag and baggage? Surely they won t last long; for the encroaching of English into their communication may slowly erode the unswerving command lines; and make it more or less unreliable. Nevertheless, it may take time; and till that happens, the resoluteness of the command lines may really amaze the British police.
Actually, this feature of all gangsters, coming from nations with feudal languages may really surprise the English police; I do not know if there are mafias of Chinese, Japanese, Indian/Pakistani, and Spanish etc. groups over there. If there are, well they may also, display a certain amount of such features.
Yet, they all are bound to lose their momentum, as their members, slowly imbibe English communication mode. However, they can atrophy the systems while they are in their prime.
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124. Who is the enemy?, A series of mistakes
125. A Reprieve for the US, 700 Billion Squander
126. Barack Obama, Defining his demeanour
127. Have you received anything yet, Evans
128. Carnage In Gaza, Psychiatric cure
129. It Wont Work!, An epitaph for the British!!!
130. Policy Or Racism
136. The English Legal System, Penalties, Death Penalty
137. What I really meant, The alien experience
139. The Liberation Tigers, Refining impressions
140. A comment in an Internet site on Indian reality
143. Attributes of ‘Sar’
144. Indian Marriages
151. The Hallowed Persons
154. Language as a weapon 1
155. Language as a weapon 2
156. Language as a weapon 3
157. Racism: A skin deep, yet painful, 1
158. Racism: A skin deep, yet painful, 2
159. A piece of blasphemy