Whose Konkani is Dying?

Image Source: World Konkani Centre

The MIO imbroglio seems to be animated by a fascistic investment of social energies at least on the part of those that are denying the rightful freedom of the parents to choose the medium of instruction for their children.  What we have on both sides of the divide is an effect/affect of libidinal energies.  One side seems to be secure in the enjoyment of sense of denial of democracy to the parents who are bundled as Catholics and Church driven when the parents who seek English medium at the primary level belong to all religious persuasions while the other side seeks a release or a wish fulfilment in a future of great promise. Thus, we have a schizoid investment of desire in our society and we can clearly draw the splitting lines of separation.  Several scholars indicate that schizoid investment of libidinal energies occur when we have societies afflicted by a social force of trauma and pain of a past or fear of loss of hegemony. Hence, several studies are attentive to the link between desire, power, trauma and memory. Hence, it might be important to understand the rise of fascist investment of social energies in our society, particularly in the context of MOI, on the touch stone of the ‘affecting processes’ that are stirring and arousing in our society in Goa. We intent to open the ‘affecting process’ only from the sense of loss in this context with deep respect and admiration to every Goan and everything that we deem noble like our mother tongue, Konkani. The sense of loss that stirs up a kind of paranoia is linked with the memory and pain of past trauma, here we shall deal with the anxiety of loss, death and fear of falling into anarchy. 

The fascist investment indulges in satisfaction or enjoyment that its adherent derives from a sense of enforcement of denial of something that is deemed as beneficial to the demonized other in a specific society.  This becomes crystal clear if we listen to the hate ridden discourse of the proponents of our mother tongue as a medium of instruction. The adamant obsession of the fascist orientation in an indulgence into an enjoyment derived from a sense of denial of the benefits of English education to the poor cannot be hidden. The hypocrisy of the fascists among the cultural police in our society is too glaring not be found out. They seem to shamelessly let the rich wash the stains of anti-nationalism that they force on the poor by the mere fact that they pay for the education of their children.  This shows that the issue although the complex is also profoundly grounded in economics. Hence, the fascist denial of democracy to the parents is also a denial of the possibility of economic and social mobility.  This fact may also come to light if we discern how they mask it with the directives of the UN while in the same breathe conveniently forget the position of the supreme court of our country on the same issue. 

All fascist tendencies are somehow rooted in Paranoia.  The case under our study also is exhibiting hair-splitting Paranoia.  Paranoia, in this context, is about the impending death of nagrization of Konkani. The nagrizedKonakani is totalised as the Konkani and summed up as standing for all that pure and noble in  Goan culture. That is why the cultural police with fascist orientations, has no Konkani outside it’s  nagrized form.  Such a barbaric reduction of our culture and tradition will certainly bring the funeral not of Konkani but of it’snagrized version.  Mourning has already begun with  therealization of  failure of nagrized Konkani. By rejecting other modes of writing Konkani, they have tried to castrate the plural generative power of Konkani and are reaping the fruits of their own violent mutilation of our mother tongue. Paranoia is about the failure of the monolithic nagrization of Konkani. Unfortunately, nagrization is also coterminous with the invention of the hegemony of the upper caste. Hence, cannot find acceptance with all Goans who are disposed to the dialect of Konkani that was sought to be nagrized. 

The fear of near-death of nagrized Konkani, seems to manifest in the form of the need of its monumentalization as a medium of instruction at the primary level. This mounentalization seem to provide a sense of security. It becomes a kind of life insurance of the nagrized Konkani that is thought to somehow extent the life of dying ‘Konkani’.Unfortunately, it has become a despotic symbolto several among us  who  have been brought up on it in schools and colleges. Nagrization brings about a schizo Konkani. Ithas already brought about a schism in the Konkani movement. The image of the death of nagrizedKonakni has already strikingly flashed with the close down of the daily Sunaprant. That is why what might be called as the ‘thanatopic image’ of the death of nagrization seems to have become the moving force of the paranoia among those who now exhibit fascists tendencies. 

Their narcissistic obsession seems to refuse to mellow down and embrace Konkani in all it generative fertility.  The fact that they disown and orphan other forms and scripts of Konkani  will bring a certain death to nagrization on the altar of standardization much in the same way as some of the  classical languages died with their speakers.  Luckily Konkani has many forms and scripts. What is being rejected is not Konkani or even Goan culture. What is rejected is thehegemony of a certain upper caste that manufactures its dominance on project of singularization and homogenization of nagrized Konkani.   The denial of the right of the parents to choose the MOI for the children is based in the paranoia of loss that some of champions of nagrized Konkani have already begun to feel. The issue is complex and is intertwined with the anxiety of possible loss of dominance. One thing is clear that our mother  Konkani with is generative fertility will not die. Goans in the past have gone beyond the bounds of Goa and Konkani has travelled the globe along with them.  The choice of English is not the death of Konkani. It opens spaces for the orphaned and disowned Konkanis  to come to the fore. Konkani will not die but will continue to rise in its speakers, in their  homes,  churches, tiatrs and public squares.  Moreover, Konkani will continue to animate our children in the school where it is sought to be a compulsory subject. 

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Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao