I wouldn't take what Wong said seriously
The New Straits Times - 03/27/1996
by Anusha Anantha

I would like to thank Prabhaharan Rajendra for writing in defence of the rest of us who contributed to Amir Muhammad's column `Perforated Sheets' (Books Page, Feb 24).

If Wong Phui Nam imagines that Rajendra misread his article in `Other Cadences' (Literary Page, March 13), I suspect that, by his definition, so would most readers.

The offending statement in Wong's article, "... it would appear that the imaginations of our best and brightest are a collective blank ...", is based on a single 100-word summary of a favourite novel by each of the contributors.

Severe indictment indeed, but of whom?

The contributors or the intellectual who made this statement?

In The ABC of Reading, Ezra Pound writes: "Any general statement is like a cheque drawn on a bank. Its value depends on what there is to meet it. If Mr Rockefeller draws a cheque for a million dollars it is good. If I draw one for a million it is a joke, a hoax, it has no value. If it is taken seriously, the writing of it becomes a criminal act.

"The same applies with cheques against knowledge. If Marconi says something about ultra-short waves it MEANS something. Its meaning can only be properly estimated by someone who KNOWS."

Under the circumstances, I would not take Wong Phui Nam's description of my imagination as one of the collective blank, seriously.

I do however appreciate and can learn from Rajendra's considered response which evinces an intellectual with humility.

Anushka Anastasia Solomon was known as Anusha Anantha before coming to Jesus Christ.