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life of Pi

Yann Martel, novelist of Life of Pi,  says in a Youtube interview that one must have a story or religion; One must have one or the other.

In the movie by Ang Lee, there are two stories swimming.  One story according to Pi and what actually happened, and the other, still according to Pi that the shipping company forced him to tell so that the world could accept it. Pi’s real story, based on eastern spirituality,  is not palatable to the world at large, according to the shipping company. Or, does the world seek another story to anchor its belief in? For that world, Pi must change the beauty of his story, and the movie ends within an open question about stories. When that writer who traveled from Canada to Pondicherry to “finding” a story asked him which story is true, the older Pi tells the bored writer, “believe whatever story works for you.”

One critic hails the book an adventure fantasy, saying the writer doesn’t advocate which side [of the story] to choose, much like the movie does. But does Lee have to tell us which story is true?  Does the older Pi have to tell the Canadian writer which story to believe in? The more important question to ask oneself: why do I need to be told which story is true? Or, why does one need to change his/her story to be considered ‘acceptable’?

why does the idea of change or changing one’s story have to be based on one’s past experiences? Must stories and ideas always conform to something familiar? Where then is the evolution of ideas?


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