Bhrigu's question

कभी जो याद भी आता हूँ मैं तो कहते हैं के आज बज़्म में कुछ फ़ित्ना-ओ-फ़साद नहीं - मिर्ज़ा ग़ालिब

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Bay Area, Strategy Manager, Haas- U. C. Berkeley, Marathons

Monday, May 16, 2005

Abhimaan, the kitchen question?

An old quiz question went thus: "Which real-life couple's story inspired the film 'Abhimaan' starring Amitabh Bacchan and Jaya Bhaduri? Ans: Pt. Ravi Shankar and Annapurna Devi (d/o of his Ustad Allaudin Khan). But a review of a biography tries to de-mythify that legend.

S. Kalidas writes a review of Swapan Bondopadhyay's book "Annapurna Devi: An unheard melody" in the latest edition of India-Today:

[...] he sought to stop her from playing in public. And Annapurna, ever the paragon of unseen, unheard purity, magnanimously obliged. Sample a couple of salacious slices: "Many say that her father had directed her not to play in public so that Ravi Shankar's playing does not sound lacklustre to the audience... After that evening's recital (at Delhi's Constitution Club, March 30, 1955) there was humming among the audience. Then the judgement of the listeners placed the crown on Annapurna. I do not know if Annapurna ever performed in public after this." (Author's italics.) And further: "She felt that Ravi was suffering from an inferiority complex because she got rave reviews. The jugalbandis, in their five or six concerts together, were enough to establish her superiority over Ravi Shankar as a performer... Ravi Shankar was justifiably jealous. And so he elicited a vow from his wife that she would no longer play in public.

There are many versions of this anecdote afloat, mostly apocryphal. Annapurna, however, told me that something worse had happened than Ravi attempting to make her take this oath. But she added that she would divulge it to none. 'That will go with me when I go.'"


Anonymous Dhananjay Joshi said...

".. biography tries to 'de-mythify' (???) that legend."
Short Message Services on mobile phones and people trying to imitate Yoda's speech forms, are, anyway, destroying the English language. Let not blogging contribute to this.

10:34 PM  
Blogger Quizman said...


Oxford English Dictionary
trans. To create a myth or myths about; to make into the subject of myth.

trans. To deprive of mythical character; to remove the aura of reverence, sentimentality, etc., from. Cf.

First usage: 1964 S. ATTANASIO tr. H. Fesquet's Wit & Wisdom Good Pope John p. 19 John his disdain for honours, by his aversion to luxury, by his exquisite cordiality..put himself on an equal footing with the people. He ‘de-mythified’ the profession of pope.

Although, current usage removes the hyphen, I had kept it for the sake of nostalgia. :-)

10:46 PM  
Anonymous Dhananjay Joshi said...


I am embarrassed. My brief search and lack of familiarity with the word led to me comment on your usage. Will be more careful next time.

12:42 AM  
Blogger Quizman said...


No problem at all.

8:55 PM  

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