Varataraja also tells about love in the movie “Red (Hunger)”.

DrThis novel goes to extremes. Where the extremes intertwine in the “Red Hunger” of Senthorn Varatharaja as if they were suffering from an insatiable hunger. Or are they instead mired in a love struggle? The most exciting thing about this novel is certainly the story of the anthropophage: to become one by merging the other – which belongs as much to the impatient characters of love as it does to the more ruthless fantasies of fear. They have radiated their magic since the ancient tales of eating their children (from Cronus to Theistes). But it was also reflected, for example, in the fictional worlds of the Brazilian colonists.

Varathraja’s novel emphasizes the aspect of love with its subtitle: “This is a love story.” Why should it be emphasized that it is about this? Because the religious scholar Senthoran Varataraja with theoretical expertise does not believe in understanding anthropophage as mere metaphor. Here people eat with skin and hair: “He puts the knife next to his face. / A waits. / He prays / A puts the blade back / On B’s neck above / Throat like – nod.” Then the wound. Too close? A lot of information? Too much data density? Too high resolution? This is the second part of this novel. He ventures into the field of storytelling. In the face of cruelty, the stern command applies: “Look / Take a closer look.” To repeat like an echo: “Look/Look closely.” Still see where the other stories left off long ago, and pull down the curtain of silence left by the candid hidden.

Those who suffer seek to share their suffering

But it can be more extreme: as with the closely searched spell, many of the other recorded sentences (edited) are quotes from the original correspondence between Armin Meiwes and Bernd Jürgen Brandes. The tabloids once called it “the cannibals of Rothenburg”. The documentary charges the reading of the novel with additional intensity.

So bloody, so brutal, so rot Events may have succeeded; Varatharajah tells this story of devouring with a deep understanding of what Simone Weil once called “human mechanics”: those who suffer seek to share their suffering. And here two people who suffer from themselves and from the world come together, and they suddenly see an opportunity to share their suffering and free themselves from it. With confrontation – which is as inevitable as gravity – a mechanism is put in place to escape suffering, and to absorb oneself in it. An unusual idea, familiar in religious thinking, and which at the same time includes a counterweight: the way the two parties are intertwined here shows the coolness of the mechanical process.

In this mechanism Varathraja narratively blurs the assignment of the roles of the perpetrator and the victim. Is the person who lives guilty of consumption is the only culprit? Or is he a victim of whom I hope will merge into another? With “B” “take me back. I want you to take me back” the first part of the novel ends. The second part begins with the return from the train station, the ticket to Berlin has already been bought, the words “You can do it” and “I ask you to do it”.

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