KOCHI: “There are certain silences underneath Marar writings.
While reading him we should go into the depths of the silences and communicate with them. As a critic Marar has been misunderstood by many.
I feel many of them criticised him without understanding his opinions and viewpoints.
Though it was not deliberate, my book has tried to defend Marar and his views,” observed M Thomas Mathew, noted critic, who has been chosen for the Vayalar Ramavarma award for his work ‘Marar - Lavanyanubhavathinte Yukthisilpam’ based on noted critic Kuttikrishna Marar.
Speaking to Express at his house in Kochi after the award was announced on Saturday, Thomas Mathew said that Marar had been a leading light which influenced him a lot.
“He has been a great inspiration, who taught me a way to express my approach to life.
His influence was mainly in two ways - the in-depth beauty and the intensity of his language.
The clarity of his writing was another thing. It was the ultimate clarity of language that you can see in a critic.
The second thing was Marar’s approach to life which was based on the greatness of humanity. Amidst all complexities of existence, including morality, moral dilemmas and regular pace of life, Marar looked into the greatness of humanity. That’s an ideology which attracted me in my life,” Thomas Mathew said.
Transforming the poetic language of a writer into a mutually-agreeable and known language for the reader is a major challenge for any critic.
“His criticisms are a logical structure of aesthetic experience,” he said adding that Marar gave him the necessary tools to become a literature critic.
Unlike many think, criticism has not been something aimed only at enemies, Thomas Mathew pointed out. “Even when there are differences of opinion you can keep good personal relationship. Mundassery Mash and Kuttikrishna Marar had been a perfect pair of this view. Leelavathy Teacher has a different point of view about Marar than mine,’’ he said.
Marar was misunderstood by the Leftists in the earlier days, there’s a gradual change, Mathew said. “P Govinda Pillai was one of the first persons who called me and said that the book gives a good reading experience,” he said.
He further said that there was a change in the Communist ideology among its followers these days.
“Now, the differences within the organisation are not ideological, rather they are based on power politics,” he said.
Thomas Mathew is currently working on a monograph on M Govindan for the Kendra Sahitya Academy.