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Thursday, 17 June 2010

The World of Consensus Literature

The film Ishara (1969), written, directed and produced by Waheed Murad (1938-1983) begins with the subjective camera moving onwards. So, it is you entering that street (which is the artist's world), while the artist welcomes you in a voiceover.

In the previous post, we discussed people and objects in the artist's world with whom you may like to identify yourself. Now, as you watch the second clip, please consider two questions and then write your answers as "comments" below:
  • What actions are performed by Amir (Waheed Murad) during the song?
  • How do these actions symbolise the role played by artists like Waheed Murad in their societies?

The clip is 3 minutes 38 seconds long. I have sub-titled it in English. Credits can be found on the Youtube Page of the clip (you reach there by double-clicking the video). Please leave a comment below, and then proceed to the next post to see where this discussion is taking us.

This is the second post in a five-part series about the role of literature in society, beginning with 'Know Yourself'.

14 comments:

Komal Khan said...

It seemed that he has achieved something unexpectedly which was very much awaited.

He shared his happiness with each one of those who were present there and once he shares his happiness they all become equally happy as he is without knowing its cause.

He danced, made others dance, in happiness he revolved on its own in the centre and all others were revolving around him.

How do these actions symbolise the role played by artists like Waheed Murad in their societies?

These actions symbolise that the artists like Waheed Murad attain trust of the society on them. The society believes what they say. They reach the hearts of the people by the actions which harmonise the feelings and understandings of others.

And the result of these actions is that which happened at the end of the video; They act - like Waheed Murad danced in the centre -

Build consensus by their actions - like others revolved and danced with him -

Create system by building consensus - like at the end he left the circle but the circle continued to revolve means the system continues its working -

Akhtar Wasim Dar said...

The artist is the voice of peoples aspirations. When Amir circles around Mr.Bezar on the bicycle it shows that artist even from higher pedestal and means of expression pivots around those who constitute basic fabric of society.

When he dances with the people of that street which represents the street at the micro level but society and Pakistan at macro level, he shows that artist's job is to harmonize the different sections of society and give identity to their feeling as well as provide hope for today and a better prospect for tomorrow, because the artist is not only an interpreter of peoples dreams but also a visionary and far seer, as well as custodian of some secrets of nature.

He holds hand of each and sundry and shows his love, affection and commitment towards each. His song resonates that with blessing of God everything is going to be fine as destiny is a hope that attracts positive approach. His hope speaks about his faith that makes all this possible.

His every gesture in touching them, holding their hands and dancing with them shows his joy and delight to be one of them, and every movement of his speaks about his responsiveness to their needs and desires.
Artist is the bulwark that ignites the fragments in such a manner that each faction of society binds into a collective and harmonize organ that leads to unity of purpose and goal.

urooj malik said...

I just loved komal's comment.

In the clip, Amir had a feeling of happiness that he personally experienced and so shared it with others, and made everybody happy like him, without knowing the reason of this happiness.

Artists like Waheed Murad in their societies play a role as developers of moral values and to spread the message of Love among the common people. They see world as bright, life as interesting and Nature as beautiful, and so produce a powerful and strengthened society which can be symbolized as paradise on earth.

rIZ said...

hmm...Agreed with the above comments. I would just add this:

"Apne sitare chamak uthe pyare" He is giving this good news to all of the characters(including us, his audience). Because if this news is related to Amir only then why is he using words like "apne" "hum" etc?

So we can say that Amir is giving this message that we all are one! his joy = our joys!

I guess he either does not know or does not want to tell us the time when that good news will approach. So in the "meantime" he is showing his joy by dancing (maybe dancing = all of his films). Of course this is related with all of his surroundings, probably that's why he is inviting all of them to dance with him.

:) Societies get such artists very rarely who say "adverse destiny has become kind" Artists like Waheed Murad include whole society and everyone (as we see at the end of the song, people from every age group are dancing in pairs) in every matter

Namrah Mahmood said...

When WM started singing people from different walks of life gathered near him. He then moved on to people who belonged to different professions e.g the one who repaired cycles, the shopkeeper and the person at the bank (perhaps this showed that his art brought people of different professions, social class, age and sex together coz all of them were equally happy) and then he danced with even those who didn’t know him eg with a person wearing suit (his art reached even those who were unfamiliar with his ideas or the message of his art). Then some of the people joined him in his dance (gradually people started to understand his art and this spread happiness). He then moved on to a shop and took something to eat from there which he gave to the person sitting nearby (social differences started to eliminate and people started loving each other). And then he brought people from 3 different age groups together (bringing generations closer to each other and thus helping the coming generations in their growth) and they danced in nearly the same way (harmony of actions in a society) with WM in the centre of a circle in which everyone danced (WM representing the basic message of the Art that brought everyone closer hence societies continued growing while keeping the message of Art as their focal point).

Thinking said...

hmm..finally I saw the clip...

The clip bring smile to my lips and I believed it effected the same way to all of us...who ever watched the clip...

One thing is sure here that happiness either of ours or others always bring smile to one's face.

Waheed Murad...just bring smile to all of the viewers faces.

Now just picture the Cinema hall...full of people...diverse in age and occupation....smiling...at the same time and on same thing...

Isn't that bring UNITY to us all....???

I saw that one person (Lehri) dont want to dance with one lady but Waheed Murad when presented lady's hand to Lehri with love and emotions...Lehri also started dancing who don't at first want to envolve in dancing...

It was because he love his friend (WM)and it makes Lehri shed away all his boundries too...

We need a person like WM...loved by all of us and thus our love towards him will make us do even if don't want to do that particular thing asked by our beloved.

And that shows....how desprately we are now waiting for someone to give us the good news....hmm....

Connie L. Nash said...

I absolutely loved the earlier discussion and am excited about a quick reading here!

Back soon for my comment...

Thanx for this example of your genius, Shafique Sahib, at engaging a small diverse group at the most basic yet most sublime universal level.

Nida said...

My comments can be similar to someone else's as i avoid reading before writing mine.
i think people like amir bring joy to others' life and play a part in bringing and keeping people around them together.

Connie L. Nash said...

I loved Komal's comments and Thinking's and all others...

Let's look at Dar Sahib's:

"When he dances with the people of that street which represents the street at the micro level but society and Pakistan at macro level, he shows that artist's job is to harmonize the different sections of society and give identity to their feeling as well as provide hope for today and a better prospect for tomorrow, because the artist is not only an interpreter of peoples dreams but also a visionary and far seer, as well as custodian of some secrets of nature. " and also everything else Dar Sahib so beautifully spoke. Again, I hope he makes a post or an article or book out of his observations...

Did I understand right, Shafique Sahib, that you are the first to use the term "Consensus Literature" mentioned on official family site for Ibne Safi?

For my own personal reactions upon first viewing, I simply loved the dancing, for me as onlooker from afar still newish to some cultural, spiritual freshness (to my eyes & heart) the circular dancing reminds me of the metaphor of the older Sufi whirling...which eventually is to include the entire world.

Here, I am not the film-maker at all because this genius director - star - singer -dancer is beyond touching in talent for all except our host here, Shafique Sahib? Yet I am not jealous because I too feel while an outsider that eventually I will also be swept into this beautiful lively circle.

He holds hand of each and sundry and shows his love, affection and commitment towards each. His song resonates that with blessing of God everything is going to be fine as destiny is a hope that attracts positive approach. His hope speaks about his faith that makes all this possible.

His every gesture in touching them, holding their hands and dancing with them shows his joy and delight to be one of them, and every movement of his speaks about his responsiveness to their needs and desires.
Artist is the bulwark that ignites the fragments in such a manner that each faction of society binds into a collective and harmonize organ that leads to unity of purpose and goal.
June 18, 2010 6:43 PM

mussawir said...

i felt so good to see how amir is getting involved with all his neighbors and giving them hope that good time will come and the shadows of darkness are not for all the times. This shows his leadership qualities that a nation like us needs.

Rida Salman said...

What beauty of those unpretentious, simple times. Leaves me with the feeling that I have missed out on something that will never be found again.

Aamir has embraced every single character here. He's sharing his joy with every individual, spreading the message of love and hope, even communicating with God, although subtly,as a response to cynicism of people much like Bezaar Sahib.

karachikhatmal said...

in a strict sense, the actions are physical translations (if you will) of the lyrics. since the lyrics themselves are relating how adversity turned into joy, WM's actions of cavorting around the scene and bringing joy to others, and imploring them to turn to hope, seem to be a logical extension of the words.

from that we can suppose that the actions are meant to showcase how artists help people see the half full glass, or to find joy in despair.

if i am honest, i do feel a bit confused, and i must say that i make this observation without the benefit of the movie's context. but it does seem that WM is also getting people to forget their miseries without divulging any particular reason for doing so. that would imply that artists just paint a facade over misery. i do realise that this is a very fascist reading of this scene, where romanticism and fantasy are dismissed as humbug. i am perhaps being too cynical.

so to surmise, i am not sure if WM, and by extension, artists are showing us the hidden joy, or distracting us form our despair.

Khurram Ali Shafique said...

Dear Karachi,

Thank you for raising a very pertinent concern, which may also be in the minds of other viewers - facist or not. Let's see if this concern gets addressed by WM somewhere in the subsequent clips :).

In the meanwhile, I would be personally very much interested in knowing what the other visitors have to say on this.

Ranu 802 said...

He is happy because very unexpectedly he seemed to have achieved what he was longing for.It is the will of God he says that has helped him out.