The punch in a sentence, the masaaledaar bit of the sentence, is often caused by emphasis. The choice to emphasise a certain word in a sentence draws attention to that particular word, giving it more importance than the others. It also changes the meaning of the sentence—it sheds light on a certain interpretation as opposed to the many others possible.
For instance, in the above sentence, to say “main dukaan gayi, aloo khareedne,” with emphasis on the main, would mean one is attempting to convey that it is they who went to the dukaan, and not someone else. Alternatively, if emphasis is laid on ‘aloo’ instead, it would tell the listener that you bought ‘aloo’, and not carrot or gobi. It then becomes interesting to note that the interpretation or meaning of a particular spoken sentence is often in the hands of the speaker—one can choose what they want their listener to understand or take away from their words.
Identity seems to often function in a similar manner, where one emphasises a certain element or shade of their personality as opposed to the others. Who is responsible for whose identity then? Do we choose what we would like to make the “punch element” of our identities, or does someone else? Will it ever be possible to move past this specific identifier and look at the whole as opposed to the fragmented?
This blog is an attempt to capture, in written form, some of our thoughts and conversations as we build the Unreserved performance.