Indian Icarus

Publish date 11-12-2023

by Redazione Sermig

Saturday 7 October 2023. Those silhouettes of hang gliders shown in the special editions of the news, innocent at first sight, will easily be remembered in an iconic form, for how evil manages to camouflage itself behind the appearance of a flying object that lands in the middle of a party. Iconography of “flight” vilified like September 11th. Violating an airspace, I think, is like violating a fantasy space.

The same situation reminded me of a photograph I had chosen for an article on the tragic, deadly competitions surrounding kite flying in India. What makes this toy dangerous is that the owners, to knock down the opponent's kite, often resort to smearing the steel cables with which they are anchored with glass powder, so sharp that only this year at the Uttarayan, in the Indian state of Gujarat, six people - including three children - died when their throats were cut by the cable.

This photograph, taken on the streets of Bangalore, shows us two kids fleeing from the sense of oppression caused by high technological development and the chaos of a modern city with high population density, unable to access the massive display of Western goods.

For them there is nothing left but to sit on top of a wall to isolate themselves, and search with their gaze, clinging to the wings of a simple paper kite, for a free space in which to concentrate their legitimate dreams. It is the heaven of those like them who have little, and who will hardly be able to aspire to anything more than an apathetic form of resignation or worse, envy.

Perhaps from today onwards, no Israeli child will ever again be able to rejoice at the sight of a colorful kite, just as any Palestinian child who survived Gaza will still be able, in the future, to make their innocent eyes shine in front of a fireworks display. .

Luca Periotto

NP Novembre 2023

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