shiv wrote:Indian Tales of Heroism usually involve ordinary Indians who speak Hindi, Bhojpuri, Dharwad Kannada or Tulu. For the story to reach our English reading eyes it has to get past the anglophile media controllers of India led by stalwarts like Turdesai, Ghose, that bowtie bugger, or DButt. They are simply not interested in this kind of stuff.
On the other hand the media of nations like Russia, the US and even Britainistan take pains to write out these things - in the English media of course and English reading Indians pick that up. So we are all up to date about Western accounts of heroism, who was the best sniper of them all, how he killed all the baddies; how it felt to come under intense Iraqi fire, and what Patton said. The heroes we remember and identify with are in the West............
But the reasons for this run deeper than media attitudes. As For the longest time we were bought up on Enid Blyton adventures where English children captured our imagination, Sudden and JT Edson novels in which we imagined ourselves as macho cowboys. We had Amar Chitra Kathas but they seemed to occupy the realm of religion. Commando novels reinforced western bravery and heroes. In college - whether as engineers, doctors or pursing the liberal arts- many of our classic texts were written by westerners. Our reading of fiction and non fiction was and is dominated by western writers and the western experience. For example, I can't remember a 'great English language novel' or, forget great, even a hugely popular war novel, written by an Indian, about an Indian war post independence. The last one that comes to mind is Mulk Raj Anand's Across The Black Waters set in World War One.
The Kargil war is a great opportunity for several non -fiction books written in the Black Hawk Down style- where are they? But I am sure may of us have read Leon Uris on the Arab Israeli war (among other books), or Jim Jones' Thin Red Line . Is it any surprise then that,as we are thus awkwardly juxtaposed to our cultural and social roots, the heroism of those who "speak Hindi, Bhojpuri, Dharwad Kannada or Tulu" seems less immediate to some of us than the deeds of some western hero in a far off land?