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An Indian Writer's Faraway Farewell To MAD Magazine

Growing up in the 1970s in the hectic but more innocent India, the magazine offered a young man the right dose of irreverence to shape his world view for a lifetime.

An Indian Writer's Faraway Farewell To MAD Magazine
Sidharth Bhatia

NEW DELHI — So MAD magazine is closing down. It will, from now on, only republish old material and annual specials. The ‘Usual Gang of Idiots‘ will no longer put their creative minds together to bring out, month after month, that compendium of insanity, cheekiness and satire, casting a skew-eyed look at the foibles of the world and its big shots, celebrities, film stars and most of all, politicians.

The news has been mourned everywhere. Generations of youngsters have been reared on it, and truth be told, their worldview has been warped — in a healthy way — to allow them to make sense of everything that goes on around them. No ego is too big to skewer, no pretensions too small to prick. It takes one back to a long time ago, when MAD was an integral part of one's reading diet, as much as inexpensive Soviet publications, representing two opposite poles of the spectrum.

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Ideas

García Márquez And Truth: How Journalism Fed The Novelist's Fantasy

In his early journalistic writings, the Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez showed he had an eye for factual details, in which he found the absurdity and 'magic' that would in time be the stuff and style of his fiction.

Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez reads his book

J. D. Torres Duarte

BOGOTÁ — In short stories written in the 1940s and early 50s and later compiled in Eyes of a Blue Dog, the late Gabriel García Márquez, Colombia's Nobel Prize-winning novelist, shows he is as yet a young writer, with a style and subjects that can be atypical.

Stylistically, García Márquez came into his own in the celebrated One Hundred Years of Solitude. Until then both his style and substance took an erratic course: touching the brevity of film scripts in Nobody Writes to the Colonel, technical experimentation in Leaf Storm, the anecdotal short novel in In Evil Hour or exploring politics in Big Mama's Funeral. Throughout, the skills he displayed were rather of a precocious juggler.

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